New Delhi [India] September 17 (ANI): The Modi government has been contributing immensely to conserving and protecting the wildlife of the country. Interestingly the coverage of protected areas which was 4.90 per cent of the country’s geographical area in 2014 has now increased to 5.03 per cent.
According to official sources, Protected Areas in the country increase from 740 with an area of 1,61,081.62 sq km in 2014 to the present 981 with an area of 1,71,921 sq km, said an official source.
Forest and tree coverage has also increased by 16,000 square kms in the last four years. India is among the few countries in the world where forest cover is consistently increasing.
There has also been an increase in the number of community reserves. From just 43 in 2014 their numbers are more than 100 in 2019, informed an official source.
India is home to 52 Tiger Reserves covering approximately 75,000 sq km area in 18 states with about 75 per cent population of the wild tigers at the global level. India achieved the goal of doubling tiger numbers in 2018, four years in advance of the targeted year 2022. The tiger population in India has increased from 2,226 in 2014 to 2,967 in 2018, the official source said.
The budgetary allocation for tiger conservation has increased from Rs 185 crore in 2014 to Rs 300 crore in 2022.
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Meanwhile, the population of Asiatic Lions has shown a steady increase with a population of 674 individuals with an increased rate of 28.87 per cent (one of the highest growth rates so far) from the 523 lions in 2015, said the source.
India in 2020 had 12,852 leopards compared to the previous estimate of 7,910 conducted in 2014 as an over 60 per cent increase in population has been recorded, the source added. (ANI)