Guwahati, Sept. 27: The Centre has approved Dispur’s ambitious project to install electronic eyes for surveillance at Kaziranga National Park to prevent poaching, particularly the one-horned rhinos. The device will enable park staff to track movement of poachers and facilitate quick response to prevent poaching.
Approval has come at a time when the Assam government is facing massive protests by different organisations across the state against unabated poaching of rhinos.
An elated forest and environment minister Rakibul Hussain told the reporters here today that the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has sanctioned Rs 3 crore to install 12 electronic surveillance devices in the park. He said in the first phase eight such gadgets would be installed within the current financial year.
“During a recent meeting with NTCA officials in New Delhi, the state forest department had been successful in convincing the former about the necessity of installing such electronic gadgets to track movement of poachers inside Kaziranga,” Hussain said. The electronic eye, which is similar to a closed-circuit television camera but with a larger coverage radius, will be installed in Kaziranga’s core area (430 square km).
It will observe movements in the park from three central control rooms to be set up at its head office at Bokakhat range office of Kaziranga in Golaghat district, the office of the principal chief conservator of forest in Guwahati and NTCA office in New Delhi.
Forest minister said the towers to install electronic eyes would be tall, in between 30 and 45 metres. The distance between one tower to another will be 20km.
Hussain said rapid response teams comprising forest department officials and personnel would be kept ready in different camps inside Kaziranga so that they could be pressed into service once those in the control rooms observe unusual and suspicious movements inside the park.
“The project is a big boost for those sincere officials of the forest department, and especially Kaziranga park authorities, who are engaged in anti-poaching activities. Technical experts who had installed such device in Corbett National Park in Uttarakhand would execute the job in Kaziranga,” Hussain said.