The All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) today opposed the move of the State Government to dehorn the Pabitora rhinos to prevent their poaching. The students’ body also condemned the Government and the Forest Department of the State for this despicable proposal and demanded its immediate shelving.The students’ body said in a statement here that with this bid, the Chief Minister and the Forest Minister have engaged themselves in a nefarious deal to eliminate the State emblem. It needs mention here that rhinoceros is the State animal of Assam.
It further said that it had stated in its written statement presented before the committee set up for examining the issue of dehorning the rhinos, that it would be opposing the move vehemently. The Government has proposed to dehorn those rhinos which would be translocated to other forest areas from their Pabitora habitat.
The students’ body said in its statement today that the Forest Department has proposed this move only to cover its failure to prevent poaching of this precious animal. It has demanded that the security arrangements in those forest areas to which the Pabitora rhinos are being shifted should be beefed up instead of dehorning the translocated rhinos.
It has called for steps to implement the suggestions put forward by the meeting of the nature-lovers organised by it in the city sometime back.
The Government must take the indigenous peoples living in the fringe areas of Kaziranga, Pabitora, Manas and Orang protected forest areas into confidence in its bid to protect the rhinos, the students’ body said.