100 Persons Attacked by Wild Animals in 3 Yrs

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SRINAGAR: Over 100 people have been attacked by wild animals in  Kashmir Valley during the last three years and at least 12 have lost their lives, the state government today said, and expressed concern over the man-animal conflict which is on a rise due to encroachment of forest land. 

The Minister for Urban Development, Rigzin Jora stated in the Legislative Council that the state of Jammu and Kashmir witnessed increase in man wild animal-conflicts, which is due to the expanding human populations, encroachment of forest lands and wastelands, fragmentation of wild animal habitat due to development activities and conversion of habitats into croplands and orchards.

Replying to a Calling Attention Notice, the Minister said during last five years, an amount of Rs. 240.70 lakhs have been paid as compensation / ex-gratia to the injured and kith and kin of the deceased persons.

The Minister said that an amount of Rs. 5,000 to Rs. 33,000 in case of injury and Rs. One lakh in case of death is provided as per the existing norms of the state. He said during the 3rdmeeting of the State Board for Wildlife held on 17th September, 2013 under the chairmanship of Chief Minister, the enhancement of ex-gratia / compensation has been proposed to the tune of Rs. 3 lakh in case of death and 30% of Rs. 3 lakh in case of grave injury and Rs. 15,000 in case of minor injury.

The Minister said during the last three years (2011-12, 13 and 2013-14) as many as 100 persons were attacked by wild animals out of which 12 persons lost their lives and 88 persons were injured in Kupwara district. In 09 death cases, compensation as per entitlement has been sanctioned while as out of injured persons the cases of 34 persons have been settled while the cases of rest 30 injured persons and 01 death are in the process of settlement. An amount of Rs 9 lakhs at the rate of Rs One lakh per case has been released in favour of next of kin of death cases while as Rs 4.695 lakhs have been released in favour of 34 injured persons.

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