New Delhi, 16 July-2014, PTI: A total of 939 rhinoceroses have died in Assam between 2003 to 2012, Parliament was told on Wednesday.
Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar, in a written reply in the Lok Sabha, said that 13 rhinoceroses died in Uttar Pradesh while 50 died in West Bengal.
As per census of 2012, 2,505 rhinoceroses were there in Assam while in Uttar Pradesh, there were 30, he said. While as per the census 2013, 229 rhinos are there in West Bengal, Javadekar said.
He said the government has taken steps for protection of wild animals including rhinoceroses.
While protected areas have been created all over the country, a specific component of recovery programmes for saving critically endangered species and habitats is provided in the Centrally-sponsored scheme of “Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitats.”
He said that legal protection has been provided to wild animals against hunting and commercial exploitation under the Wildlife Protection Act 1972 and financial and technical assistance is provided to state governments under Centrally- sponsored schemes.
Javadekar said that CBI has been empowered under Wildlife Protection Act 1972 to apprehend and prosecute wildlife offenders and others.