Bangalore: Karnataka Governor H R Bhardwaj
today said that rampant encroachments of forest land and
mining in these areas had endangered wildlife in the country.
"Encroachments of forest land and mining in such areas in
the country is a major threat to wildlife and has endangered
it to a great extent," Bhardwaj said while addressing the 56th
Wildlife Week Celebrations here.
While rampant mining has brought down tiger population in
Sariska, Panna and Ranthambore reserves in MP and Rajasthan
respectively, mining and quarrying activities in Karwar,
Chamarajnagar and Sandur in Karnataka`s Bellary district had
adversely affected wildlife, he said.
There was an urgent need not only to conserve wildlife
but also protect it from man-made threats, he said.
Ace cricketer and vice-chairman of the state Wildlife
Board, Anil Kumble said "according to a recent tiger census,
Karnataka will hopefully be number one in tiger population."
He said the Board would soon launch a website that would
enable wildlife enthusiasts to interact with forest officials.
State forest minister C H Vijayashankar said the
department was aiming at increasing the forest cover in the
state to 33 per cent from the present 23 per cent.
He announced that the 57th Wildlife Week celebrations
will be held in Bannerghatta National Park.
Touching upon the important issues relating to wildlife
conservation in the state, Chief Wildlife Warden B K Singh
said one of the major challenges facing the department today
is to minimise the human-animal conflicts.
Many wild animals especially elephants and leopards are
killed in such conflicts.
Foot patrolling by forest personnel at strategic
locations in protected areas have paid rich dividends, he
said, adding prompt and timely action has also proved
effective in this regard.