Friday, July 13, 2007

Indian Prime Minister proposes actions to save tigers

New Delhi, July. 12 (PTI): With poaching of tigers becoming a major cause of concern, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has directed the states to urgently fill up vacancies of frontline staff in sanctuaries to save the big cat.

Singh also called for time-bound action to relocate 270 villages in the critical areas in the sanctuaries by offering the people attractive packages to ensure their adequate rehabilitation.

The Prime Minister gave these directions at a meeting held last evening to review the tiger conservation measures undertaken by the government recently, according to a PMO release here today.

The meeting, which was attended by representatives of Environment and Forests Ministry and Tiger Task Force, suggested a slew of measures for anti-poaching activities and conservation of the big cats.

The officials briefed the Prime Minister about the measures to be considered to keep up the momentum in the national conservation movement.

One of the key suggestions was constitution of a Tiger Protection Force (TPF) of local people trained under ex-armymen to save the endangered species.

"The shortage of staff can be augmented by local residents working under the supervision of ex-servicemen as a TPF in selected sanctuaries," the statement giving details about the meeting said.

It was felt that the TPF using locals, mostly tribal residents in nearby villages, would help them earn besides creating a bond between them and the park.

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