Friday, July 1, 2022

40 highlands built to save animals from flood in Assam

Assam Forest Minister Parimal Suklabaidya Wednesday said that 40 new scientifically designed highlands have been constructed to save the wildlife of Kaziranga National Park and other forests and to provide them shelter during floods in the state.
Suklabaidya said the forest department is in a state of “complete preparedness” to rescue animals from the ongoing floods in Kaziranga and other national parks and wildlife sanctuaries across the state.
“We have successfully completed the construction of around 40 highlands for tackling the prevailing flood situations in Kaziranga and other national parks and wildlife sanctuaries,” he said. The new highlands have been designed scientifically with provision for adequate grass and plants yielding fruits such as elephant apple and Indian gooseberry, Suklabaidya said in a statement.
“The highlands enable us to reduce the animal casualty during annual floods”, he added.
Suklabaidya, who is closely monitoring the flood situation in the national parks and wildlife sanctuaries, said that the department is fully geared to deal with it.
“Kaziranga bears the brunt of floods every year, be it small or big. We are fully equipped to tackle any sort of exigency along with food arrangements for officers and forest personnel deployed for rescue operations of animals in Kaziranga,” he said.
More than 25 boats are kept ready for rescue of animals in Kaziranga National Park and a slew of initiatives have been taken by his department to deal with any deluge in a better and efficient manner, he said.
A baby elephant was saved from drowning on Tuesday morning, he added.
Kaziranga National Park and Tiger Reserve director Jatin Sharma said the park has a total of 144 man-made highlands, including 33 big ones for housing animals during floods.
“In addition to that, we have built an 8.5 km long road-cum-highland for providing shelter to animals during floods and for patrolling,” he said.
Vaccination of cattle and camp elephants have been carried out near the periphery of the park in the last one and a half months to prevent infection from domestic animals to the wild animals.
In the ongoing floods in Assam over four lakh people have been affected and eight persons killed. With surface connectivity to Barak valley snapped due to the deluge, the Army, Air Force and Assam Rifles have been pressed into service for rescue and relief operations.


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