Awards for Bandipur Tiger Reserve Forest staff
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Awards for Bandipur Tiger Reserve Forest staff

July 22, 2023

Veterinary Doctor & Forest Guard win accolades for saving wild elephant’s life and effective management of forest resources

Mysore/Mysuru: Bandipur Tiger Reserve that continues to thrive after surviving extreme conditions like wild fire and other challenges, is in the limelight again after the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, followed by a slew of awards and appreciations.

Of the total 53 Tiger Reserve Forests in the country, Bandipur is ranked second in the conservation and effective management of forest resources and has earned appreciation. A Veterinary Doctor has been adjudged for award for saving the life of an elephant which was battling for life after electrocution and a Forest Guard has also been awarded for his meritorious services.

Bandipur forest, which has the distinction of being the State’s first Tiger Reserve, has made significant achievement in effective management. In a survey conducted once in four years, Bandipur has scored 94.8 percent marks, which is the second highest among the 53 Tiger Reserves in the country. The survey conducted by National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA),  Wildlife Institute of India (WII) and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has certified Bandipur forest as the best. The Bandipur forest, which was hitherto getting 70 percent to 80 percent marks, now basks in the pride for having scored 94.8 percent points this time.

The survey, which was conducted based on 80 criteria and 200 sub-criteria on subjects like wildlife conservation, increase in the numbers of tigers and elephants and management of various other issues, has adjudged that Bandipur forest has the best management system in place.

Vet saves elephant

On Feb. 14 this year, an elephant came in contact with a fence connected to electric line at Bergi beat in Omkar Zone and was battling for life. The elephant was rescued following the concerted efforts of senior Forest Officers of Omkar Zone and Bandipur forests. On that day, Deputy Range Forest Officer (DRFO) Shivakumar immediately cut the electric wire connected to the fence and Veterinarian Dr. Mirza Wasim provided the timely treatment improving the condition of the elephant.

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After some time, the recovered elephant was sent back to forest and was monitored for two days. This act of the Forest Officials came under praise by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Minister for Environment, Forests and Climate Change Bhupendra Yadav on their Twitter accounts.

This earned Dr. Mirza Wasim Central Government’s ‘Gaj Gaurav’ award.

Guard too recognised

R. Anand, a Forest Guard working at Gopalaswamy Betta Range of Bandipur forest, has also been conferred award for his services in preventing  man-wildlife conflict and for preserving forest wealth.

The awards will be presented by Union Minster for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Bhupender Yadav at a function to be held on July 29 at Uttarakhand’s Jim Corbett National Park, on ‘Global Tiger Day’.

Kerala’s Periyar Tiger Reserve first, Nagarahole third

Kerala’s Periyar Tiger Reserve has bagged the first place, followed by Bandipur and Nagarahole Tiger Reserve which bagged second and third places respectively in the survey conducted once in four years. National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) has sent Letters of Appreciation to the Directors of all these Tiger Reserves and advised to take much more stringent measures for the preservation of wildlife in the future.

Matter of pride for Karnataka

Bandipur Tiger Reserve has received appreciation for best management. In the survey conducted by NTCA, WII and MoEF, Bandipur Tiger Reserve is declared the second best in the country. In the earlier surveys, Bandipur used to get only 70 to 80 percent of marks. But now, due to the constant efforts of Forest Officials and staff, Bandipur Tiger Reserve has done an excellent job, which is a matter of pride for whole Karnataka —Dr. P. Rameshkumar, Director, Bandipur Tiger Reserve

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