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Projects to curb hunting

Jamshedpur, May 3: Ranchi wildlife division is trying to engage tribals in eco-development activities, creating livelihood opportunities for them as well as spreading awareness about the need to preserve natural resources in the Dalma sanctuary.

Under the initiative, the forest authorities are promoting self-sustainable growth in 85-odd villages dotting the 192-sqkm elephant reserve.

With the help of National Bee Board, the forest department has already launched a project for tribals living in and around the reserve.

“Tribals of as many as 10 villages are now producing honey in sufficient quantity, which they sell in local markets,” said Dalma divisional forest officer Kamlesh Pandey.

This apart, the divisional office has initiated a drinking water project for poor tribals.

Pandey added that the department intended to engage the tribals in fruitful activities, so that they remained focused on earning livings through sustainable methods.

“These tribals are living in extreme conditions with no basic amenities and earning opportunities. They fell trees, kill animals and destroy other natural resources for their livings. So, we launched eco-development projects around three months ago,” he added.

The DFO claimed that animal hunting had come down here over the past few years, but still a lot needed to be done to make the reserve a safe place for animals.

As a part of their continuous efforts to protect wildlife in Dalma, forest officials are determined to make the coming Sendra or Bishu Shikar a bloodless ritual this year too.

The forest range office has already started security drills and increased the volume of patrol in the villages.

Forest personnel are keeping a close watch at Shaharbera, Makulakocha entry points, Chakulia, Chadghar, Kaamjhor, Kadamjhor, Pinderabera, Dahubera, Khokro, Rajdoha, Konkadasa, Pata, Chimti (naka), Majla Bandh, Badka Bandh, Bijli Ghati, Rangajal, Mahajal, Budisaal, Vipingdadi and Kalimandir.

“We will also maintain vigil on NH-33 on May 11 when tribals from different parts of Jharkhand, Bengal and Odisha will assemble at Asanboni before proceeding to the hills. Tribals will be frisked near Notel City Inn, Kali Temple as well as Tatanagar and Chandil railway stations,” a forester said.

Efforts are also on to prevail upon Dalma Buru Sendra Samity and Dalma Buru Sendra Dishua Samity to observe the annual event on the same date. The two tribal outfits have announced separate dates — May 12 and on May 19, respectively — to celebrate the hunting festival.

“The Dalma Buru Sendra Samity has been observing Sendra for centuries here. Nonetheless, we would like to find an amicable solution by talking to both parties. One date will reduce our problems and also minimise chances of bloodshed,” Pandey said.