On a tour to the wildlife sanctuary at Kolleru lake in Andhra Pradesh, the union minister for environment and forests of India stated (source: The Hindu newspaper of 28 February, 2010) – “I don’t see the problem from the environment angle alone. Humans are more important than birds.”
The issue at stake is the reduction of the size of the wildlife sanctuary from present plus 5 contours to plus 3 contours.
Two local members of parliament and even the state government are reported to be pitching for this reduction in wildlife habitat. Pitiful situation indeed!
A final decision would be taken by the central government after a 5-member expert committee submits a report in about 3 months.
Thankfully, the minister recalled that the former chief minister of the state had sought a solution acceptable to all stakeholders.
The Kolleru wildlife sanctuary is a critically important avian habitat and stopover on India’s east coast between Chilika lake up north and Pulicat lake down south.