Saturday, September 15, 2018

Dissecting The Tiger Reserves

The news is infrequent but the consequences are deadly. Already large part of our land mass has been stripped of all natural ingredients and more is being subjected to. Politician and bureaucrats do not accord consideration to land which has been deprived of an ecosystem bearing or is too difficult to be comprehended as of ecological importance.

The dispensation exhibits limits of ill planned approach, lack of logical thinking, no care for our environment and declining wilderness. Economic upliftment is an urgency often aimed without proper planning and with total disregards to remaining natural landscapes. Populist governance is a bane of democracies all over the World not only in India, otherwise a time tested meritorious system of governance.    

Large ecosystems under ambit of conservation and right under the public eyes do survive the rot, but this is not true entirely. Dissecting our tiger reserves, National Parks and wildlife sanctuaries under the road and rail development programmes is considered as prerequisite since that is imperative to our goal of economic development. 

During the Raj inaccessible lands were ripped apart by road and rail construction leaving the forest lands open for depredation and its wildlife for easy culling. The rulers had only one aim in mind and that was to generate revenue from an usurped Nation. But the land in question belongs to us and certainly does not justify emulation of policies of our erstwhile masters. But that is what we are doing since independence. 

After all it is just a strip. Is this well under the limitation of sustained development in green corridors? The impact of decimation of such strips of forest lands is disastrous, but it does not appear to be so whence quantum of land destroyed is considered inconsequential, and the imbalance and disturbance caused is considered negligible. Whence the conservationist cry hoarse this is equated with the parable cry wolf!     

The fact is even ill planned minimalist approach to urban development in green corridors or protected areas can augur fatal consequences and in some circumstances that negative impact may be futuristic. For example we have seen the impact of massive deforestation resulting in global warming in recent times. 
Teerath Singh 
Plans are often accepted and implemented by managers and bureaucrats with no insight into how ecosystems or natural lands work. They have no idea about the biodiversity prevailing in those places. They have no knowledge about the sensitivities of other life forms and their survival. Technical and economic viability are the key consideration taken into account, and yes the beneficial political fall out could favor the ruling dispensation. In the hurry to implement the projects wildlife mitigation are not taken into account while executing the projects or at times they are never placed on the information table for general public, NGOs and conservationists.  

Teerath Singh

We cannot continue to see development through a single prism, a multifarious approach towards management of our lands should be accorded priority keeping in mind the health of the environment as whole. Hence before we lose our natural lands a more circumspect policy should be in place which would mitigate conflict between wildlife managers, NGOs and conservationist. This would be a sign of less damage  being done to our natural lands if not entirely - under the developmental goals.