Massive public awareness urged for preserving dwindling wildlife
PESHAWAR: The nation Tuesday celebrated the World Wildlife Day with the theme of sustaining all life on earth where the stakeholders called for massive public awareness, education and youth engagement to preserve the dwindling wildlife of the country.
The leading universities, wildlife departments and global wildlife conservation non-governmental organizations organized awareness seminars, education walks, competitions and dialogues to mull over the dwindling wildlife reserves of the country including plants, animals and bird life.
The United Nations General Assembly in its 68th session held on December 20, 2013, had announced March 3 as World Wildlife Day to be observed every year to raise awareness about the importance of world’s wild animals and plants.
Adviser to the Prime Minister on Climate Change Malik Amin Aslam addressing a celebration in connection with the World Wildlife Day as chief guest said the ministry would extend national Nature Internships for youth to partake foreign funded projects aimed at environment conservation, wildlife protection and habitat restoration in the country.
The ceremony was organized by MoCC, Snow Leopard Foundation (SLF), Embassy of Kyrgyzstan and FAST National University.
Amin said Pakistan was home to world’s unique species of Snow Leopard that were facing serious existential threats due to multiple factors.
However, Pakistan Snow Leopard and Ecosystem Protection programme (PSLEP) was not only focusing on preserving the wildlife rather its habitat as well, he added.
Speaking on the occasion as the guest of honour Kyrgyz Ambassador Eric Beishemhiev said that high mountainous regions of Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan were becoming highly vulnerable due to glacial melting and increasing global warming. However, millions of people rely on the glaciers in these high altitudes whereas the wildlife and flora in these habitats were also a source of livelihood to many people.
He noted that Kyrgyzstan was the first country to hold international congress on snow leopard conservation in 2013 that became a starting point for the world to seriously work on snow leopard protection.
“This has also helped in adopting Global Snow Leopard and Ecosystem Protection (GSLEP) programme in the countries having snow leopard habitats and species,” he added.
On another occasion, World Wildlife Fund for Nature Pakistan (WWF-Pakistan)’s Technical Advisor Muhammad Moazzam Khan stressed the need for creating more awareness among people about wildlife-related issues to protect endangered animals and plants from waste pollution.
He also emphasized the need to engage and enable youngsters and students to play a proactive role in creating awareness about conservation of wild species facing various threats and minimize the in-country illegal trade of wildlife.
In the Abbottabad Wildlife division organized World Wildlife Day celebration at Rakh Sardaran game reserve.
SDFO Haripur Syed Sarmad Shah while addressing at the ceremony said “we have launched a drive to create awareness amongst the masses about the importance of the wildlife and would organize different programs in Abbottabad, Ayubia and Haripur including lectures in schools, colleges, debate competitions, and others.
At the end of the ceremony, SDFO and Wildlife department officials set free 50 pairs of birds in the game reserve. – APP