Update on the Assam govt burns 2,500 seized rhino horns in special ceremony.
ASSAM: Lately the Assam government had decided to burn thousands of Rhino Horns and on Wednesday, 22 September 2021, in the presence of the state's HCM Shri Himanta Biswa Sarma successfully burned 2,479 rhino horns.
Why On News?
This was announced by the Assam state Cabinet last week after weeks of ‘rhino horn reverification exercises by the Forest Department across the state.
What's the update Now?
The ritualistic burning of the rhino horns was done publicly at Bokakhat on the occasion of World Rhino Day in the presence of Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, some of his cabinet colleagues, including Forest and Environment Minister Parimal Suklabaidya and local AGP MLA and Agriculture Minister Atul Bora, senior forest department officials and conservationists in a first of its kind exercise in the country.
Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma stated that the special drive is part of an effort to curb poaching of the endangered one-horned Indian rhinoceros.
"We want to give a strong message to the world that the rhino alive with the horn on its head is precious to us, and not a dead animal with its pride removed by poachers or those kept in the government treasuries," he said on Wednesday.
Out of 2623 reconciled horns, 94 will be showcased in a museum to be set up at Kaziranga National Park, while 29 will be kept for ongoing court cases.
The horns were recovered from the rhinoceros which died naturally in the forest zone, some by drowning, others by infighting.
Assam, the state that has 71 percent of the world’s population of one-horned rhinoceros, has sent a strong message that people of the state do not believe that the horns have medicinal values. Based on myths and with no scientific backing, rhino horn is being used in traditional Chinese medicines.
The population of one-horned rhinoceros in Assam has increased from 1672 in 1999 to 2652 as per 2018 census. The one-horned rhino, which was earlier “endangered” as per the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, is now listed as “vulnerable.”
Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma also said that in future, the horns of those rhinos that die naturally or in accidents will be burnt annually.
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