Pooja Bhatt is 'sickened' to see the video where a group of men kill a gigantic dolphin with axes and sticks in Sharda canal (Pratapgarh district). Reacting to the video, Bhatt said, "The perverse pleasure these men are deriving from this act is chilling."
"They need to be psychologically evaluated and taken to task. These men are a hazard to society. Today it is a dolphin. Tomorrow it WILL be a human," Bhatt wrote further and tagged Maneka Gandhi. Minutes after Bhatt's tweet, the Pratapgarh Police replied saying three men have been arrested in the case and further legal action is being taken.
On January 2, IFS officer Ramesh Pandey tweeted saying, “In an unfortunate incidents a Gangetic Dolphin got killed by locals in Pratapgarh district of UP. Locals thought the species a ‘Fish’ which may be dangerous for their lives. Wildlife awareness is much needed for conservation.” The FIR filed says, "Killing the Gangetic River Dolphin is a punishable offence under Section 9/51 of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972"
In India, dolphins are sighted in long deep river reaches in Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. There are around ,3700 Gangetic River Dolphins in Indian river systems, according to official figures.
In an unfortunate incidents a Gangetic Dolphin got killed by locals in Pratapgarh district of UP. Locals thought the species a ‘Fish’ which may be dangerous for their lives. Wildlife awareness is much needed for conservation. https://t.co/ggM0DAEf51 pic.twitter.com/TcxCdKwDW1— Ramesh Pandey (@rameshpandeyifs) January 2, 2021
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Ten years after Gangetic Dolphins were declared national aquatic animals, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a conservation project for the species. The 'Project Dolphin' aims to give a stronger impetus for conservation of the aquatic mammals in the lines of 'Project Tiger' and 'Project Elephant'.
According to the environment ministry, the project envisages to address conservation concerns and empower the stakeholders such as the river-dependent population in reducing the pollution and allowing sustainable fishery and river-based other livelihood options through scientifically oriented conservation methods.
Addressing the nation from the ramparts of the Red Fort on India's 74th Independence Day, Modi said, "We will launch 'Project Dolphin' for protecting ocean and Gangetic dolphins."
(With PTI inputs)
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