Govt approves joining MoU for conservating Dugongs

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New Delhi, Apr 11 (UNI) The Union Cabinet today gave its approval for joining the Memorandum of Understanding on the conservation and management of Dugongs, also called 'Sea Cows', and their habitats throughout their range.

With this decision, the Indian efforts for conservation of Dugongs would get international recognition, Science and Technology Minister Kapil Sibal told reporters here after the cabinet meeting.

Also. protection and management of endangered Dugong populations in the Indian waters will become more effective, he said, adding that it would facilitate availability of international expertise for carrying out research studies on Dugongs in the area.

Dugong, the only herbivorous mammal, is strictly marine and the only member of Order Sirenia found in India and legally protected under Schedule I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.

Protection of this species assumes great importance in the conservation of marine habitat and its biodiversity.

India is a signatory to both Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and the Convention of Migratory Species (CMS).

UNI RT SG HT1734

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