Illegal Canal Threatens Ranthambore Tiger Corridor

The canal will clearly obstruct wild animal movement
Dharmendra Khandal

An illegal construction of a canal to connect the Kushalipura nalla to the Manasarovar dam, threatens to destroy a corridor that connects Ranthambore National Park to the Sawai Mansingh sanctuary. Wild animals can cross the two protected areas that run parallel to each other, at only two points, as high hills and three villages block the other points. The canal is all set to block the most often used of the two points.

Ex-forest minister NN Meena laid the foundation stone for the project in April. In an October meeting of the Standing committee of the National Board for Wildlife (NBWL), the Rajasthan government had sought clearance for the project and sought acquisition of 1.99 hectares of land for the project. The proposal had already been rejected twice in 2005-2006. Conservationist Prerna Bindra has mentioned that objections were clearly noted in the October meeting and that accountability must be present for bypassing the National Board for Wildlife and starting construction even though the project had been rejected twice and without mandatory permissions. The canal is meant to provide water to five villages with an additional 77 million cubic feet of water. The nalla which is 10 m deep and 12 m wide will be a death trap for wildlife.

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