Thursday, August 18, 2022

Indian Oil to aid transcontinental relocation of ‘Cheetah’

Indian Oil signed an MoU with National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) for transcontinental relocation of ‘Cheetah’ in its historical range in India, in an event held today at Paryavaran Bhawan, New Delhi.
A press release by executive director (corporate communications) Indian Oil Corporation Limited, Dr Uttiya Bhattacharyya stated that the MoU was signed by S M Vaidya, chairman, Indian Oil and Dr S P Yadav, addl. director general (Project Tiger) and member secretary (NTCA) in the presence of Hardeep Singh Puri, Union Minister for Petroleum & Natural Gas and Housing & Urban Affairs; Bhupender Yadav, Union Minister for Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Labour & Employment; Ashwini Kumar Choubey, MoS, Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution; and Rameswar Teli, MoS, Petroleum & Natural Gas and Labour & Employment.
This is in continuation with the MoU signed on July 20, 2022 between Government of India and Government of the Republic of Namibia on wildlife conservation and sustainable biodiversity utilization, for establishing the cheetah into the historical range in India. Indian Oil will be contributing Rs.50.22 crore over 5 years for the project components viz. Cheetah introduction, its habitat management & Protection, eco development, staff training and veterinary healthcare.
Under this project, a source population of 15-20 Cheetahs will be flown in from Namibia and South Africa and will be introduced at Kuno National Park, Madhya Pradesh. It is a national project involving National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA), Govt. of India and the State Govt. of Madhya Pradesh.
Indian Oil is the first corporate to come forward to support the “Project Cheetah” under CSR, as the project has not only national importance but also essential for balancing the ecosystem. Cheetah has a very special significance for the national conservation ethic and ethos. Understanding this, Indian Oil is aiding the cause of bringing the Cheetah back to India, which would have equally important conservation ramifications.
It may be noted that Indian Oil adopted Indian Single Horned Rhino as its mascot last year and, since then, the company has been at the forefront of India’s Rhino conservation endeavours.
Speaking on the occasion, Hardeep Singh Puri, union minister for petroleum & natural gas and housing & urban affairs, said, “Led by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, India is now leading the way as far as sustainable progress, and ecological conservation is concerned. Indian PSUs have been doing well to strengthen Government’s sustainable endeavours, and the Cheetah Introduction project is one such example. This MoU between Indian Oil and NTCA should serve as a template for a future project on restoring Biodiversity. Cheetahs are human-friendly and special, and their return to India is an important environmental leap.”
S M Vaidya, Chairman, Indian Oil, said, “The MoU between Indian Oil and NTCA demonstrates the nation’s resolve to nurture a greener, brighter and vibrant new India. I am sure that NTCA will steward this project on a mission mode, and let me assure everyone of Indian Oil’s steadfast commitment to supporting this endeavour at all times. I must add that this Cheetah Introduction Project is in sync with our priority of conserving India’s natural habitat and heritage. Our mascot, the now famous Indian Oil Rhino, stands firm as a testimony to that commitment”.
NTCA is the nodal agency authorized by MoEF&CC for funding, supervision and hand holding. Indian Oil will contribute its CSR funds to NTCA, which shall co-ordinate with the State Govt. of Madhya Pradesh and other agencies involved in the project.


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