Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Bihar steps up vigil to prevent dolphin hunting

Patna, Oct 27 (PTI) Alarmed by a steady decline in the number of dolphins, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has ordered a strict enforcement of the ban on the hunting of the national acquatic animal.

Official sources said Kumar has directed the district magistrates of Patna, Bhagalpur and Buxar to see that the ban order has been adhered to.

Officials have been asked to keep close surveillance along the Ganga river banks to stop the hunting, Patna District Magistrate J K Sinha said.

Patna and Bhagalpur districts are the two districts where dolphins have been reportedly found dead in the past.

The decision to declare the Ganga dolphin as an Indian national aquatic animal was taken at a meeting of the newly-formed Ganga River Basin Authority in New Delhi that called for accelerated steps to clean up the river.

The meeting, which took place early this month, was chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.