Project Tiger under threat in Kaziranga

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After 1985 no fresh proposal for inclusion of land in the fringe areas of KNP has been taken and major portion ofthe six additions (measuring about 6.47 sq. km) to the parkwas handed over by the Revenue department only recently.

The Kaziranga National Park is one of the bestprotected parks in the world and the people living in thevicinity and engaged in tourism sector need not worry aboutlosing their land or job to the Project Tiger, he added.

The Jeep Safari Association had also alleged that somewildlife NGOs were involved in creating problems for the localpeople by forcing the government to create a tiger reserve inthe park to further their own interests.

Aaranyak''s secretary-general Bibhab Kumar Talukdarsaid his organization has always been supportive ofeco-friendly tourism and believes that its benefits shouldreach most of the villages around the park and tourismactivities promoted uniformly in all its five ranges includingthe north bank range.

Talukdar said the visitors to the sprawling andresourceful national park should be encouraged to enjoy allcorners of the park within the designated tourist areas.

''''Flourishing tourism activities have providedlivelihood opportunities to fringe villagers in Kaziranga Parkand sustainable tourism shall inculcate deep-rooted commitmentin the minds of tourists and general public towardsconservation of flora and fauna in Kaziranga'''', he said.

The ongoing census of tigers using camera traps inKaziranga National Park was initiated in 2009 by Aaranyak incollaboration with the authority in the park after it had beendeclared a Tiger Reserve in 2006.

'''' The objective of the research was to bring outinformation on number of tigers using modern scientifictechniques and the initial findings has already put theKaziranga in the global focus in respect of successfulconservation of habitats that supports tigers along withone-horned rhinos and other species'''', he said.

During the ongoing census of tigers, the parkauthorities had given all possible logistic support to theteam and there is no financial collaboration between the twoinstitutions as alleged by some people, Talukdar asserted.

KNP is the only park of its kind with a viable lowland grassland ecosystem in south Asia and for its long-termsustainable development all stakeholders such as thegovernment, non-governmental organizations, service providers,local people and the tourists should work together, Duttafelt.

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