Dudhwa, November 29, 2013: To sensitise the media to the nuances of wildlife conservation, with a concentration on human-animal conflict mitigation, a one day meet was organised by the WTI team with support from Aircel, on November 27 in Dudhwa National Park. The attendees included team members from WTI- Dr Anil Singh, Dr Devendra Singh, Dr Saurabh Singhai and Prem Chandra Pandey- and key players of print media of the region.
“The increasing role of media cannot be denied in helping spread awareness among the masses. With such a meeting our aim was to primarily interact and discuss the various ways conservation journalism can aid in human-carnivore conflict mitigation,” said Dr Anil Singh, the Regional Head of UP for WTI.
The response at the meeting was extremely promising with the media personnel keen on aiding the NGO and Forest Department in any way they can. Different newspapers have since shown their support for tiger conservation by publishing various articles on what people should do if they come in contact with any large carnivore as well as basic precautions the villagers in conflict-prone zones can take to safeguard themselves.
“Earlier this year we had distributed various brochures highlighting the same thing which is necessary but when a newspaper publishes and highlights the same thing, it immediately reaches out to more people. The habitat of the tiger and all other large carnivores and wildlife in general has degraded to such an extent that conflict is inevitable. By keeping this topic in the public’s attention, through the various reporting channels, we help save both tiger and human lives,”added Dr Singh.
The Uttar Pradesh Carnivore Conservation Project, supported by Aircel, aims to address these increasing instances of human-carnivore conflict in the Dudhwa landscape. Assisting the authorities in tiger conservation in the state through the project, it takes a multi-pronged approach including conflict mitigation involving biologists, sociologists and veterinarians, tiger status monitoring, capacity building of Forest Department staff and creating awareness amongst the local communities.