|India says no to WB fund for tiger conservation
July 26, 2009
(PTI): India, which is home to 70 per cent of the world's tiger
population, does not need any fund, aid or expertise from the World
Bank for conservation of big cats in the country, Union Minister of
Environment Jairam Ramesh has said.
Mr. Ramesh said the country
is self-sufficient to do the job with any outside help but added that
the government was open to the idea of the bank funding for workshops
and conferences aimed to boost conservation and protection of tigers
whose population has dwindled to 1,400 in the latest head count.
"We do not need any money from the World Bank for the conservation of tigers in the country.
else but we being the holder of 70 per cent of the world's tiger
population could know the problems better. We don't need any help," the
minister said at the two-day all India meeting of field directors which
concluded here on Sunday.
"However, the government is open to
the idea of World Bank's funding for the purpose of holding conferences
and workshops aiming to boost the tiger conservation," he said while
informing that India will host World Tiger Summit next year in November
Conservationists strongly feel that the World Bank's
move to invest in tiger protection programme is just an attempt to
"meddle" with the India's green efforts given its huge investments in
several developmental projects such as dams which will damage wildlife
"If past experiences of the World Bank's involvement in
conserving wildlife in India are anything to go by, it will be wiser
not to allow it to meddle in the affairs of tigers in the country.
government does not need the bank's money or expertise," said wildlife
expert K Ullas Karanth of the Wildlife Conservation Society.
Ramesh said tiger population in the wild are more in India, Russia,
China and Southeast Asia, but the country has the maximum tiger
population at 1,400, which is not very encouraging though.
said at the World Tiger Summit next year tiger experts from across the
globe such as Global Tiger Initiative will congregate to deliberate on
the issues pertaining to conservation of the striped cat.
"We just cant sit quiet, Tiger-range states need to do more to protect habitat and combat poachers, stop usage of tiger parts.
gathering and coordination are the key while looking at the threat
posed to the tigers due to various reasons such as habitat destruction
and poaching besides man-animal conflict," the minister added.