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Dihing-Patkai afforestation & wildlife protection is the need of the hour, say nature lovers

TINSUKIA: Nature lovers, wildlife workers, environmentalists, and common people on Thursday expressed their happiness and sadness while talking about the declaration of the Dihing-Patkai Wildlife Sanctuary as a national park. The consensus is that afforestation and wildlife protection is the need of the hour.

Devajit Moran, secretary of the Green Bud Society NGO which works for the protection of flora and fauna of the Northeast, said: ” I want to say here that only declaration of Dihing-Patkai as a national park will not do.  No important steps have been taken for the protection of Dihing, which is famous for the state bird White Winged Wood Duck. Much more important roles to be followed. ”

“Bamgudam and Lalpahad should also be included under the park, the east and west block, and Lakhipathar Reserve Forest too. It should be developed as a ” proper” national park. It must be ascertained that there is no sound pollution or harm to the atmosphere within ten kilometers of the park,” he added.

Moran thanked newly elected Assam’s chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma and the forest minister for the announcement to upgrade the sanctuary as a national park.

On World Environment Day, the chief minister had also announced the upgradation of Raimona Sanctuary as a park.

The state forest department on Wednesday announced the upgradation of Dihing-Patkai Wildlife Sanctuary as a national park. The sanctuary is one of the largest lowland rainforests in the country. There are five other national parks in the state: Kaziranga, Orang, Manas, Nameri, and Dibru-Saikhowa.

There was a massive movement by nature lovers, advocates, and environmentalists across the state and countrywide which got global recognition which brought forth the upgradation.

Dihing-Patkai is around 550 kilometers east of capital Guwahati and 50 kilometers from Tinsukia. It is hoped that the national park status to Dihing-Patkai will play a key role in protecting its biodiversity.

Dihing-Patkai is spread across 111.19 square kilometers of land in upper Assam’s Tinsukia district and Dibrugarh districts. It got recognition as a wildlife sanctuary in 2004.

It is the habitat of 47 mammals, 47 reptiles, and 310 butterfly species.

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