By D N Singh
Simlipal biosphere reserve, Asia’s second largest biosphere, is rapidly getting engulfed by a forest fire. What can be a sad commentary for the day which we celebrate as World Wildlife Day!
Simlipal housed in the majestic Meghasan mountain range is otherwise known as the climatic regime which controls monsoon in the state and in the neighbourhood.
Strange and sad that almost ten days of the inferno there the incident has failed to get the due attention by the departments concerned as one of the richest heritage goes up in flames.
It all rests on tweets whereas 7 of the total 21 ranges comprising the biosphere is simply burning. No mechanism is yet in place to arrest the fire which spreads rapidly killing innumerable floras and faunas.
Surprising Lethargy !
The lethargy shown, inspite of being warned by the chief minister and the centre, by the wildlife wing, is puzzling!
After ten days of the tragedy, the Principal Chief Conservator of Forest, on Wednesday, is slowly heading towards Simlipal to know the cause behind the forest fire.
A home to one of the largest tiger reserves in the country and a safe sanctuary for wild elephants in India, Simlipal is undoubtedly a rich repositories of medicinal species of flora besides being a conducive habitat for en number of faunas.
Interspersed with springs and dales, this climatic capital of Odisha has remained a preferred destination for myriad researchers from all across the country and abroad.
What is worse that, It has become a cyclic feature that almost in the month of March every year forest fire occurs in Simlipal and undisputedly ignited by the unholy alliance of timer mafia and the pochers.
And shockingly the department concerned quietly keeps waiting till the heritage is in perill! Ten days of fire is no mere incident.
Sense of Emergency Missing
The smokes billowing from this green landscape for so many days do speak a lot about the casual concern attached to it! Many wildlife wing bosses yet choose the comforts of the state capital’s headquarters than summoning an expeditious remedy to douse the fire.
Had there been the feel of exigencies then the bosses should have pressed for immediate need of choppers to do the water sprinkle on a war footing than leisurely visiting the biosphere.
What the visits would serve? Just a report to the ministry or punishing a few foot soldiers of the department.
By that time millions of floras and large number of faunas would reduce to ashes and which cannot be replenished by any officer.
Even why cannot the union minister Prakash Javadekar prevail and press for the quick dousing of rest Ranges by sending choppers.
About the Author:
DN Singh is a Bhubaneswar-based senior journalist.
This is the personal opinion of the author. The views expressed in this write up have nothing to do with the www.prameyanews.com