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Three-pronged approach to deal with man-leopard conflict
The Environment Ministry has formulated a new approach to guide states to deal with increasing instances of man-leopard conflict. The approach calls for cooperation of various departments, use of up to date technology and formation of expert groups.

In a first of its kind, the Environment Ministry on Monday issued guidelines -- based on three-pronged approach - to States in dealing with rising cases of man-leopard conflict.

According to Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh, the first strategy is aimed at building confidence and paving the way for cooperation between various departments as police, revenue, and forest, along with local communities, while addressing conflict situations.

The second important component is establishing trained teams to handle conflict emergencies. Two levels of teams, the Primary Response (PR) Team and the Emergency Response (ER) Team have been suggested.

The PR team should consist of local community representatives trained in crowd management. Their basic role will be to secure the area before the arrival of the ER team, said Ramesh. The ER team, comprising forest department officials and trained veterinary staff, will need to deal with the animal in a situation-specific manner.

The third component of the guidelines emphasises the use of “latest technology and scientific know-how to improve efficacy of capture, handling, care, and translocation (if necessary) of the animal, and to design locale-specific mitigation measures”.

There is also an emphasis on scientific monitoring of problem leopards and feedback monitoring of the efficacy of mitigation measures, with independent scientists and experts.

“It is hoped that affected States will draw on these guidelines to design situation-specific mitigation measures to deal with the complex issue of man-leopard conflict,” pointed out Ramesh. 

 

Source: The Pioneer