On the occasion of World Wildlife Day, Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar on Tuesday, March 3, lauded India's ecosystem. Taking to the microblogging site Twitter, Javadekar said that India's wildlife wealth is a testimony of the country's ecology. He also appreciated the government policies for the conservation of wildlife under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
India is proud to have 2967 Tigers, 30,000 Elephants, 3000 single horn Rhinos, 500+ Lions. This wildlife wealth is a testimony to India's robust ecology & continued government policies for conservation under the leadership of PM @narendramodi .— Prakash Javadekar (@PrakashJavdekar) March 3, 2020
Earlier on February 17, Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke about the importance of conservation of wildlife and habitat while addressing the United Nations (UN) Convention on Migratory Species (CMS). According to PM Modi, for ages, conservation of wildlife and habitat have been a part of our cultural ethos, which encourages compassion and coexistence.
Addressing the convention, PM Modi said, "Our Vedas spoke of the protection of animals. Emperor Asoka put great emphasis on preventing the destruction of forests and the killing of animals," he said. Stating that India is blessed with diverse ecological habitats, and also has 4 bio-diversity hotspots, he said, "With 2.4 percent of the world's land area, India contributes to about 8 percent of the world's known bio-diversities. They are the Eastern Himalayas, the Western Ghats, Indo-Myanmar landscape, and Andaman and the Nicobar Islands."
On 20 December 2013, at its 68th session, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) proclaimed 3 March – the day Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) was signed in 1973 – as UN World Wildlife Day to celebrate and raise awareness about the world’s wild animals and plants. World Wildlife Day has now become the most important global annual event dedicated to wildlife.
World Wildlife Day will be celebrated in 2020 with the theme of 'Sustaining all life on Earth', encompassing all wild animal and plant species as key components of the world's biodiversity. This aligns with UN Sustainable Development Goals 1, 12, 14 and 15, and their wide-ranging commitments on alleviating poverty, ensuring sustainable use of resources, and on conserving life both on land and below water to halt biodiversity loss.