Project Lion proposes Barda in Gujarat as second home for Asiatic lions

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Project Lion proposes Barda in Gujarat as second home for Asiatic lions

The Gujarat government has proposed the Barda Wildlife Sanctuary (BWS) as a second habitat for the Asiatic lions.

  • It is about 100 km from Gir National Park where the population of this big cat has increased. > The Central Government has given in-principle approval to this project.
  • The recommendation to relocate the lions to Barda was made in the report titled “Lion @ 2047: Vision for Amritkal”.
  • This report was issued by the Wildlife Institute of India. The Maldhari community also resides in Barda.

BWS will save the lion population from extinction in the following situations-

  • Diseases like canine distemper virus
  • An unexpected decrease in the number of prey
  • Natural calamities,
  • Retaliatory killing etc.

Under Project Lion, landscape ecology based conservation of Asiatic lions has been envisaged in Gujarat. For this, conservation and environment-development will be integrated.

It was started in 2020 on the lines of Project Tiger and Project Elephant. Asiatic lions are found only in India. They have 5 protected areas in Gujarat – Gir National Park, Gir Sanctuary, Paniya Sanctuary, Mitiyala Sanctuary and Girnar Sanctuary.

Conservation Status: It is listed in Schedule – 1 of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 and in Appendix – 1 of CITES. It is classified as Endangered on the IUCN Red List.

Asiatic lions are slightly smaller than African lions. African lions are listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List.

Lion @47 Vision for Amrit Kaal

  • Protecting and restoring the habitats of lions,
  • Involving local communities in conservation,
  • To make India a global hub for diagnosis and treatment of big cat diseases and to promote conservation through initiatives such as Project Lion.

Source – Hindustan Times

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