SC asks government to consider suggestions on safe corridors for wild animals

The Supreme Court today asked the Centre to consider suggestions, including making 27 corridors across the country for safe passage of elephants and other endangered animals.

Published: 04th August 2017 06:13 PM  |   Last Updated: 04th August 2017 06:13 PM   |  A+A-

File photo | EPS

By PTI

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court today asked the Centre to consider suggestions, including making 27 corridors across the country for safe passage of elephants and other endangered animals and directed it to "positively" file a response within three months.

A bench comprising Chief Justice J S Khehar and Justice D Y Chandrachud told to Centre to consider the suggestions given by the petitioners after taking the help of experts.

Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand said the government would file a counter affidavit after consulting experts.

Senior advocate Shyam Divan, representing ecologist Vidya Athreya and others, handed over the suggestions to Anand and said that the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) might consider identifying 27 corridors across the country for safe passage of elephants and other endangered animals.

"Take as much time as you (Centre) want, but positively file the counter affidavit within three months," the bench said.

The apex court had earlier sought the Centre's response on a PIL seeking measures, including framing of a national policy, to save endangered species like the Great Indian Bustard and the snow leopard.

The petitioners had told the court that species like Great Indian Bustards, snow leopards and wolves were on the verge of extinction and they needed to be conserved.

They had also referred to unnatural deaths of elephants on the highways and railway tracks and said that the areas earmarked for the largest mammal were not sufficient.

The PIL has said the railways and highway authorities should evolve mechanisms like constructing underpasses and fencing roads to ensure that elephants did not get killed.

It has referred to the issue of climate change and said that there should be safe corridors for allowing wild animals like elephants in moving from one place to another to beat extreme weather conditions and there should be a comprehensive policy to avoid man-animal conflict.

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