Commissioner Secy Forests tours Gharana wetland

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Nov 18: Commissioner Secretary, Forests, Ecology and Environment, Sanjeev Verma, today visited Gharana wetland to inspect conservation works being executed there.
Pertinently, Gharana has been notified as Wetland Conservation Reserve under Wildlife Protection Act and has also been designated as Important Bird Area (IBA). During winters, thousands of migratory birds like Bar headed geese, Common tail, Coot, Woolly necked Stork, Mullard, Pin tail and Gadwal visit the wetland from Central Asia.
Chief Wildlife Warden, Suresh Kumar Gupta, informed that Rs. 11.70 crore has been deposited with Revenue authorities for land acquisition so that various development, conservation and awareness activities are taken up there. He mentioned that department of Wildlife Protection has prepared a comprehensive five year Management Plan for Gharana Wetland Conservation Reserve. The plan envisages proper approach road with parking facilities, construction of view points, installation of slice gates, setting up of effluent treatment plant, habitat improvement by way of de-silting and de-weeding, facilities for visitors, training of local youth as eco-guides and awareness programmes.
Commissioner Secretary exhorted upon the officers to involve local youth in facilitating the visitors as eco-guides besides highlighting the rich fauna of Gharana wetland through wide publicity.
Regional Wildlife Warden, Jammu, Dr. Kumar M K and Wildlife Warden, Jammu, Anil Atri along with concerned staff accompanied the Commissioner Secretary.