BHUBANESWAR: UNION Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday said Odisha is a major beneficiary of the Central assistance for the Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitats (IDWH).A Centrally sponsored scheme, IDWH funds are used in programmes such as Project Tiger, Project Elephant and Development of Wildlife Habitats (DWH).
Tiger and elephant being highly endangered wild animals, Pradhan said the Narendra Modi Government has been according priority for their conservation.The Ministry of Environment and Forest has provided over Rs 36 crore to the State in 2019-20 and 2020-21 for conservation of tiger and elephant.
The assistance under the Centrally sponsored Project Tiger scheme during the two years was Rs 26.87 crore out of which Rs 11.19 crore was for Satkosia tiger reserve and Rs 15.68 crore for Similipal reserve.
While the Centre had made a provision of Rs 9.17 crore in 2016-17 under Project Tiger, the assistance increased to Rs 16.46 crore in 2017-18 and then came down to Rs 10.22 crore in 2018-19. Last year’s assistance was Rs 13.03 crore.
The fund for Project Tiger in the Union budget was increased from the revised 2019-20 figure of Rs 282.57 crore to Rs 300 crore during the current fiscal.
Similarly, the Centre has provided Rs 9.68 crore under Project Elephant which he said will help the State Government to deal with the man-elephant conflict firmly.
“Over Rs 35 crore has been released to Odisha by GOI between 2019-21 under Centrally sponsored schemes for tiger and elephant conservation. Modi govt’s consistent efforts are ensuring that tigers continue to roar in the jungle,” Pradhan tweeted.
Consistent efforts towards environmental sustainability and conservation of wildlife under the leadership of the PM and Union Environment and Forest Minister Prakash Javdekar have become a trailblazer for the revival of endangered animal species, like tigers and elephants in India, he added.
The Union Minister said the key initiatives undertaken by Modi Government include efforts to increase forest cover, compensatory afforestation, green skill development which are helping create a nature-friendly eco-system and generating new opportunities for our youths.