What’s the news?
- The Neighbors of a golden langur habitat in western Assam’s Bongaigaon district have opposed a move by the State government to upgrade it to a wildlife sanctuary.
- The Assam Forest Department had in January issued a preliminary notification for converting the 19.85 sq. km. patch of forest into the Kakoijana Bamuni Hill Wildlife Sanctuary.
News in detail
- The memorandum submitted was on behalf of 34 villages around Kakoijana inhabited by the Koch-Rajbongshi, Boro, Garo, Rabha and Gorkha communities demanded that the “conventional idea of wildlife sanctuary” be dropped and the reserve forest converted into a community forest resource “using Forest Rights Act, 2006, to ensure community co-managed system of participation for sustainable conservation”.
- The villagers pointed out that the conservation efforts of the locals had helped the authorities concerned to restore the forest canopy from less than 5% to more than 70% which in turn helped increase the golden langur population from less than 100 to more than 600 over almost three decades.
About Golden Langurs ( Trachypithecus geei )
- They are primate species, living in western Assam and foothills of Bhutan.
- They play a vital role in the dispersion of seeds and pollination which helps to maintain the forest ecosystem.
- They are found in Manas National park and in nearby forests.
- Communities in Kakoijana reserve forest, near Chakrashila Wildlife Sanctuary, Assam, have helped to conserve the species and maintain their population.
- Protection Status: IUCN Red List: Endangered; WPA 1972: Schedule-I; CITES: Appendix-I