Wildlife deptt pledges to launch massive campaign against encroachments in Kashmir

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Srinagar

Department of Wildlife Protection, Jammu and Kashmir Government today pledged to launch a massive campaign against encroachments in wetland bodies, sanctuaries and areas under its control.

Regional Wildlife Warden, Kashmir, Raashid Naqash said that Department of Wildlife Protection has pledged to launch a massive campaign against encroachments. He said that the Department is envisaging on an ambitious plan of retrieving the Government land across the Kashmir region.

He said that such activities are being carried out on the directions of the Chief Wildlife Warden, J&K.

In this regard, the officials called for a campaign to take a strong action to curb the illegal trade of wildlife that is threatening the biodiversity.

“Our officials are under oath to curb the encroachments and illegal activities in areas protected under wildlife,” Naqash said.

Meanwhile, Wildlife Warden (Wetlands), Ifshan Dewan informed that Deputy Commissioner, Budgam, Tariq Hussain Ganaie, directed for a joint demolition drive which was successfully conducted under Soibugh beat of Lakes Range, Hokersar, Srinagar, by the Wetlands Division.

During the drive, the locals resisted the demolition drive and engaged into a stiff resistance on demolition party in which Tehsildar, Budgam and Wildlife Warden sustained minor injuries.

The special reinforcement was provided by the Central Division, Dachigam, Srinagar, Forest Protection Force, Srinagar and the Station House Officer, Budgam.

“This joint effort proved fruitful to retrieve the government land,” Dewan said. “We will be continuing our drive and remove encroachment around wetlands,” she said.

She informed on around two kanals of government land, a tin shed was raised at Soibugh area of Budgam. However, the officials demolished the fabricated fencing and confiscated the construction material used for the illegal encroachment.

The officials called for a greater role of the civil society in raising awareness among the people of all sections, which would help in protecting forests and wildlife.

It may be recalled here that the Government had initiated a process of demarcating the Forest and Wildlife land across Jammu and Kashmir. The officials said that strict actions would be taken against the encroachers and criminals of wildlife trade.

Range Officers of this Division, Suhail Yousuf Qazi, Mukhtar Ahmad, Muhammad Ashraf and Feroz Nazir along with the field functionaries played a pivotal role in anti-encroachment drive.

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