Animal Welfare Current Affairs - 2020

Guidelines for Import of Exotic Species

The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change recently issued advisory to import of Exotic Live Species.

What are Exotic Live Species?

The Exotic Live Species are plant or animal species that move from the original range to a new one.

Under the new guidelines, the Ministry has said that “Exotic Live Species” are to be construed to mean only under Appendices I, II and III of the CITES (Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species).

The species listed under Appendix I of the CITES, no trade happens. To the species that are listed under Appendix II, trade shall be allowed only with minor permission. In Appendix III, there are large number of birds and animals that are listed that can be traded.

Background

The new guidelines have been issued as the global concerns on wildlife trade and zoonotic diseases have increased due to the outbreak of COVID-19.

Guidelines

Under the new guidelines, the importer should obtain No-Objection certificate from Chief Wildlife Warden of the state. The persons possessing Exotic live species should make voluntary disclosure within a period of 6 months.

The Forest Officials will check if the facilities where the species are being housed are safe. They will also issue online certificates to owners in six months of date of disclosure.

Campaign launched on Prevention of Human and Animal Mortality on Highways

On June 5, 2020, the Union minister of Road Transport and Highways Shri Nitin Gadkari launched the United Nations Development Programme campaign called “Prevention of Human and Animal Mortality on highways”.

Need

India is witnessing 5 lakhs road accidents every year. Out of these 1.5 lakhs lose their lives. The campaign is launched to bring down the accident rates.

Measures

The GoI has taken several road safety measures to reduce accidents. This includes Rectification of Black spots, Crash barriers, Traffic barriers, road safety audit, rehabilitation and reconstruction of narrow bridges and highway patrolling.

The GoI has also spent good amounts in creating infrastructure that is safer to animals. The Nagpur-Jabalpur Highway is one such example. Similar successful steps have been taken in Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Maharashtra, etc.

Nagpur-Jabalpur Highway

Around 5,450 wild animals have been captured in the cameras installed that they are using the underpasses constructed in the highway. The report was generated by the Wildlife Institute of India.