TRAINING OF WILDLIFE LAW ENFORCEMENT IS CRITICAL TO PROTECT DUDHWA TIGER RESERVE
In light of this, TRAFFIC, in collaboration with the Uttar Pradesh Forest Department, Wildlife Insititute of India and Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB), organised a training programme on 10 December 2021 to help strengthen the wildlife law enforcement skills of the forest officials at Dudhwa Tiger Reserve.
Over 70 officials attended this training and participated in sessions on illegal wildlife trade scenario and its latest trends; identifying commonly trafficked wildlife; common illicit wildlife trade routes and modus operandi of wildlife traffickers and smugglers; use of cybercrime and transport sector for illegal wildlife trade, use of forensics for collection of evidence, and other related subjects on curbing wildlife trafficking.
A more detailed session focused on understanding and implementing various sections of the Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972, including forest officers' powers, offences under the Act, and legal action procedures.
Dr Saket Badola, IFS and Head of TRAFFIC's India office, said, "In order to counter organised wildlife crime, organised response is required. Our training workshops such as the one organised at Dudhwa Tiger Reserve focus on strengthening the skills of enforcement officials and introducing new techniques, both crucial for curbing on-going wildlife crime".
Mr Sanjay Pathak, IFS, Director of the Dudhwa Tiger Reserve, appreciated the efforts by TRAFFIC in bringing together experts for conducting the training and stressed the need to organise these regularly. He said that wildlife crime is not restricted to wildlife areas, and there is a need to enhance enforcement support outside the protected areas.
The training programme was designed and conducted by experts from WCCB, Wildlife Institute of India (WII), an Advocate and TRAFFIC team.