Dimapur: The Nagaland forest department and 16 villages surrounding the 202 square km Intanki National Park in Peren district signed a four-point memorandum of understanding (MoU) for protection of the park and conservation of its forests and wildlife.
The park, which is grappling with land encroachment, deforestation and hunting issues, is home to wild buffaloes, hoolok gibbon, elephants, tigers, sloth bear, wild dogs and flying squirrels and many other wild animals and is also known for its scenic beauty and semi-tropical vegetation.
The agreement was signed under the initiative of new commissioner and secretary of Nagaland forests, environment and climate change department Y Kikheto Sema on the occasion of Wildlife Week celebration on the theme “Partnerships for Wildlife Protection” at Intanki National Park Protect Camp located at the park on Tuesday.
The chairmen of the 16 villages appended their signatures to the MoU while commissioner and secretary Sema and principal conservator of forests and chief wildlife warden Ved Pal Singh countersigned it in the presence of the villagers and department officials.
In the MoU, the village chairmen affirmed to cooperate with the state government and the department for the protection of the park and its biodiversity for the greater cause of our future generation.
They also resolved to refrain from hunting/poaching and other destructive activities in the national park and also impose prohibition orders in their respective villages banning hunting and other activities not permitted by law.
It was also resolved to cooperate with the department in its policies and programmes in management of the park and share information of relevance willingly to either party.
The department assured to make efforts for eco-development activities of the surrounding villages, including improvement of livelihood and other employment opportunities for the local youth, by way of trainings and other human resource development programmes.
Speaking on the occasion, Sema made a fervent appeal to all the stakeholders, including the district administrations, forest department and public, to join hands to protect and conserve not only the Intanki National Park but also the entire state’s forests and wildlife for the future generation.
With only five per cent of land in Nagaland belonging to the state government and the rest in the hands of public, Sema underlined the need for the support of the community and individuals to protect and preserve forests and wildlife.
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