Tigers living in the rich forests of Vidarbha and villagers co existing their vicinity will get a boost with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in Switzerland shortlisting wildlife wing’s ambitious project titled ‘Integrated habitat conservation and ecodevelopment in Vidarbha tiger landscape’.
Meyipokyim Aier, additional principal chief conservator of forests (APCCF) for wildlife, Nagpur East, has been asked by IUCN to prepare a joint proposal with the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI). This project is expected to get a grant of Rs20 crore from the German government.
Besides the forest department, WTI executive director Vivek Menon too had submitted a concept plan to the IUCN. “As both the proposals were from the same region, IUCN programme advisory committee and programme council asked the department and WTI to work jointly. The selection process was tough and challenging,” said a senior forest official.
IUCN wants wildlife wing to collaborate with WTI on this project with more focus on livelihoods and infrastructure. The NGO has been asked to take a lead on socio-economic issues, community engagement and livelihoods.
The project will fund conservation of tiger populations, while at the same time paying attention to the sustainable development of human habitats to avoid Man – animal confrontation. It will also encourage more anti-poaching and law enforcement efforts and engaging & actively involving local communities in tiger conservation.
There was tough fight between nine Asian countries to receive funding for such wild life consevation projects. These included India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao, Myanmar, Nepal, & Vietnam. Which finally could be bagged by Vidarbha!