National Board for Wildlife
- Due to the rapid decline in wildlife population, the Government of India during 1952 had constituted an advisory body designated as the Indian Board for Wildlife (IBWL).
- The Indian Board for Wildlife was chaired by the Prime Minister. Since its inception, twenty-one meetings have been convened and several important decisions relating to conservation of wildlife has been taken by the Board.
- During the 1970’s the Government of India appointed a committee for recommending legislative measures and administrative machinery for ensuring environmental protection.
- Accordingly, a comprehensive central legislation was enacted in 1972 called the Wildlife (Protection) Act for providing special legal protection to our wildlife and to the endangered species of fauna in particular. The Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 has been amended, the latest being in 2006.
- As per the amendment of the Act in 2002, a provision was incorporated for the constitution of the National Board for Wildlife, replacing the Indian Board for Wildlife.
- National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) is a statutory Board constituted on 22nd September 2003 under Section 5 of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972. The NBWL is chaired by the Hon’ble Prime Minister.
- The National Wild Life Action Plan (2002-2016) provided for declaring identified areas around Protected Areas and corridors as ecologically fragile under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986, wherever necessary. The Indian Board for Wild Life on 21st January, 2002 considered Wild Life Conservation Strategy, 2002 and recommended that lands falling within 10 km of the boundaries of National Parks and Sanctuaries should be notified as eco-fragile zones under Section 3(v) of the Environment (Protection) Act.
- Eco-Sensitive Zones are notified and regulated accordingly under Section 3(2)(v) of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.
Wildlife Crime Control Bureau
- The Wild Life Crime Control Bureau has been created under Section 38Y of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972. The mandate has been specified under Section 38(z) which includes collection, collation of intelligence and its dissemination, establishment of a centralized Wild Life crime databank , coordination of the actions of various enforcement authorities towards the implementation of the provisions of the Act, implementation of the international Conventions, capacity building for scientific and professional investigation, assistance to authorities in other countries for a coordinated universal action towards control of Wild Life crime and to advise the government on various policy and legal requirements.
- It also assists and advises the Customs authorities in inspection of the consignments of flora & fauna as per the provisions of Wild Life Protection Act, CITES and EXIM Policy governing such an item.
Central Zoo Authority
- The Central Zoo Authority was created by the Central Government through an amendment of the Wild Life (Protection) Act in the year 1992. The main objective was to enforce certain minimum standards and norms for upkeep and health care of animals in Zoos and to restrain mushrooming of unplanned and ill-conceived Zoos that were cropping up as adjuncts to public parks, industrial complex and highways.
- In India, functioning of zoos is regulated by an autonomous statutory body called Central Zoo Authority which has been constituted under the Wild Life (Protection) Act. The Authority consists of a Chairman, ten members and a Member Secretary.
- The main objective of the authority is to complement the national effort in conservation of wild life. Standards and norms for housing, upkeep, health care and overall management of animals in zoos has been laid down under the Recognition of Zoo Rules, 1992.
- Every zoo in the country is required to obtain recognition from the Authority for its operation. The Authority evaluates the zoos with reference to the parameters prescribed under the Rules and grants recognition accordingly. Zoos which have no potential to come up to the prescribed standards and norms may be refused recognition and asked to close down.
- The Authority’s role is more of a facilitator than a regulator. It, therefore, provides technical and financial assistance to such zoos which have the potential to attain the desired standard in animal management. Only such captive facilities which have neither the managerial skills nor the requisite resources are asked to close down.
- Apart from the primary function of grant of recognition and release of financial assistance, the Central Zoo Authority also regulates the exchange of animals of endangered category listed under Schedule-I and II of the Wildlife (Protection Act) among zoos.
- Exchange of animals between Indian and foreign zoos is also approved by the Authority before the requisite clearances under EXIM Policy and the CITES permits are issued by the competent authority.
- The Authority also coordinates and implements programmes on capacity building of zoo personnel, planned conservation breeding programmes and ex-situ research including biotechnological intervention for conservation of species for complementing in-situ conservation efforts in the country.
National Zoological Park
- The National Zoological Park was set up on 1st November 1959 as per the decision taken in the 1st Meeting of the Indian Board for Wild Life in 1952. It is being directly managed by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India.
- The Indian Board for Wildlife felt in the year 1952 to have a zoo in the national capital of the country to provide recreation to people at large. Accordingly, an ad-hoc committee of some prominent nature lovers of Delhi, including Smt. Indira Gandhi, was constituted under the Chairmanship of Chief Commissioner to formulate a proposal for establishment of Zoological Park for Delhi. Mr M.E.F.Bowring Welsh, of the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, was appointed as its Secretary.
- The committee met on 9th September, 1953 and approved the site between Purana Quila and Humayun’s Tomb for the purpose.
- It was also decided that the Central Government will develop the park and hand it over in running condition to the Delhi Government since wildlife was managed by Forest Department of the Delhi Government.
- An official from Indian Forest Service Mr. N.D.Bachkheti was assigned the duty on 1st October 1955 to setup this Zoo.
Wildlife Institute of India
- Wildlife Institute of India was established in 1982 as an attached office of the Ministry of Environment and Forests. Subsequently, it was granted autonomous status in 1986.
- The institute is mandated by Government of India to carry out research on various aspects on Wild Life conservation, conduct training programmes for capacity building of Wild Life managers, build up repository of knowledge of Wild Life and provide technical and advisory services to the State and Central Governments in the country.