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Bratya Basu flags off wildlife protection drive

Bratya Basu flags off wildlife protection drive

Kolkata: State Forest minister Bratya Basu on Friday flagged off a mobile van that will roam across the city during Durga Puja to spread awareness on the measures to protect wildlife.

"The mobile van will spread awareness about the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 among common people. It will roam across Kolkata during Durga Puja this year," said Bratya, after flagging off the vehicle at Aranya Bhawan.

While the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, is an act of the Parliament of India enacted for protection of plants and animal species, the vehicle body depicts pictures of birds, snakes, turtles and other animals along with wildlife helpline number —18003455204.

It also has messages such as 'Turtle Trade Is Illegal' as buying and selling of turtle meat is a crime and turtles are protected under Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 and 'Give The Birds A Cage Free World' as capturing, killing, selling, buying and trading of Indian Scheduled birds is illegal and prohibited under the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972).

In January this year, the West Bengal Criminal Investigation Department (CID) had busted an interstate racket and seized 689 live and dead endangered Indian flaps shelled turtles.

It was the biggest seizure of endangered turtles in Bengal in recent months.

According to a senior official of Aranya Bhawan, the mobile van will go to as many Puja pandals as possible during the Durga puja this year.

"The message through this vehicle drive will spread awareness on what urban population can do to save our wildlife and environment. Durga Puja is the best time to reach out to people. There will be four such vehicles running across the city of during Durga Puja," the official said.

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