Consultation to combat wildlife offences held
DIMAPUR, FEBRUARY 19
An Inter-Agency Coordination Meeting of Enforcement Agencies of Assam, Manipur and Nagaland was organized today in Dimapur jointly by Wildlife Crime Control Bureau, Eastern Region, Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India, Kolkata and the Department of Forest, Environment, Ecology and Wildlife, Nagaland to combat wildlife offences. Guwahaty to Moreh in Manipur via Dimapur is identified as a major transit route for trade of illegal wildlife products. With an attempt to put a check on poaching and subsequent transit, coordinated efforts form the all enforcement agencies with constitution of exclusive Wildlife Crime Control Unit in the state is a need of hour, emphasized by Shri Satya Praksh Tripathi, Chief Wildlife Warden, Nagaland and Chairman of the meeting. He again highlighted the cases of Star Tortoise and Ivory seizure made by the Forest Department while giving an overview of wildlife crime in the state of Nagaland. Mr Tripathi reminded the gathering about problems of limited resources coupled with armed insurgency in the region to counter poaching effectively.
A significant mandate of the Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB) is to facilitate inter-agency co-operative work in combating wildlife offences across the country. With a view to serve this purpose, the WCCB (ER) brought representatives of various law enforcement agencies under the same roof on this day. Shri Chaturbhuja Behera, the Regional Deputy Director, WCCB (ER) addressed the representatives to join hands with a common notion to conserve the rich biodiversity of the nation. Shri Behera further enlightened the participants about the ongoing trend of illegal wildlife trade across the country and the prevalent modus operandi was also discussed upon. Suggestions were invited to facilitate inter-agency intelligence sharing and on-field co-operation amongst the agencies not only at intra, but also at inter-state level to prevent illegal wildlife trade.
All representatives from enforcement agencies of Assam, Manipur and Nagaland participated enthusiastically in discussion. Mr M Sonowal, DIG (BSF), CI (Opr), Manipur led the discussion about role and powers of enforcement agencies in detection and proceedings of wildlife offence cases. He expressed the concern about lack of intelligence sharing among the agencies. Representatives shared their personal experiences about dealing with Rhino, Pangolin, Amur Falcon, Sea Cucumber, Agarwood poaching and trade in the region.
Delegates identified wildlife crime sensitive areas in their area of jurisdiction; agreed for intelligence sharing, interstate co-ordinated enforcement action on real time basis, need of capacity building to deal wildlife cases and constitution of Wildlife Crime Control Unit. House promised to give the best to safeguard the precious wildlife of the country.
Programme concluded with vote of thanks proposed by Shri Kocha Meyase, IFS, Conservator of Forests (STC), Nagaland.