New Delhi, Nov 30 : The Delhi High Court on Thursday expressed concern over the Forest Department’s proposal to conduct event “Walk with Wildlife” inside the Asola Bhatti Wildlife Sanctuary in the Southern Ridge.
Justice Jasmeet Singh asked the Delhi government counsel to present the file related to the proposal, stressing the need to ensure it aligns with established norms.
While the government lawyer assured the decision was made at the highest level in compliance with regulations, Justice Singh raised alarm about the lack of knowledge regarding the number and location of wildlife in the sanctuary.
The court questioned the safety aspect, particularly if a leopard were to stray into the buffer area during the event.
Amici curiae, advocates Gautam Narayan and Aditya N.Prasad, argued that conducting such an event inside a notified forest is prohibited by law.They highlighted that only vehicular movement is allowed in a forest, and the proposed event contradicts the Centre’s policy on eco-tourism.
The Delhi government counsel clarified that the event was proposed for two days on December 9 and 10, limited to 300 people in batches of 40-50.
However, the court expressed concerns about the potential disorganised influx of people and the lack of knowledge about wildlife locations.It asked the Delhi government counsel to demonstrate compliance with all laws and regulations on December 4, seeking assurance that the event aligns with established norms for wildlife sanctuaries.
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