Guwahati, June 25: Assam Chief Minister Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma today asked the state environment and forest minister, Parimal Suklavaidya to institute probe into the deaths of a large number of cattle egret including chicks that were nesting on a private bamboo grove in Tangla town of Udalguri district of the state.
Armed with an order from the authority of Tangla Municipal Board, municipal workers cut down a bamboo grove in the campus of one Lokjeet Sutar in the town apprehending that the Cattle Egret that were nesting on the bamboo grove would help spread COVID virus.
As a result, over 200 Cattle Egrets including chicks were killed. Death of such a huge number of birds have been widely condemned in the state once the video went viral in the social media prompting the Chief Minister Dr Himanta Biswa Sarma to ask the state Environment and Forest Minister Parimal Suklavaidya to get the incident probed.
Tangla Municipal Board had ordered for clearing of bamboo trees in private lands in Tangla town of Udalguri district which inhabit hundreds of Cattle Egret.
Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner of Udalguri Uday Praveen took stock of the situation where the bamboo groves were cleared by Tangla Municipal authorities resulting in the death of over 200 Cattle Egrets. The official directed for rehabilitation of the surviving baby Cattle Egret to the Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre near Kaziranga National Park in the state.
The Deputy Commissioner has tweeted that show cause was served to the authority in Tangla Municipal Board under Epidemic diseases act 1897 and COVID regulations 2020 for spreading misinformation and creating fear among locals regarding spread of COVID-19.
An FIR was lodged by the forest department under Wildlife Conservation Act 1972 against the death of such a huge number of Cattle Egrets.
Several nature conservation organisations and conservation leaders have condemned the unfortunate deaths of these birds and demanded action against such heinous action on part of the particular municipal board.
Noted conservation leader and the CEO of Aaranyak, Dr Bibhab Kumar Talukdar has tweeted terming it a very inhuman act that has taken lives of so many birds. He called it a murder and demanded action to prevent recurrence of such incidents in in future.
Soumyadeep Datta of Nature’s Beckon said that such misinformation about the spread of COVID virus that has resulted in death of so many birds is highly condemnable and urged the state government to take action against the guilty.