Recently the Central Government has unveiled a plan titled “Lion@47: Vision for Amrutkal” for the conservation of Asiatic lions in the Gir region of Gujarat.
- “Lion @ 47: Vision for Amritkal” has been launched under Project Lion.
- It aims to protect and restore habitats to manage the growing population of lions. as well as generating livelihoods for local communities, establishing a global center of knowledge on lion disease diagnosis and treatment, and promoting inclusive biodiversity conservation.
Compared to Project Tiger
- Project Lion is being implemented in the landscape of Gir in Gujarat, the last remaining habitat of the Asiatic lion.
- In contrast, Project Tiger is being implemented in 53 tiger reserves across the country. Both these projects aim to ensure the overall conservation of the ecosystems inhabited by these key species.
- Project Lion is being implemented by the Government of Gujarat and other stakeholders including the Central Zoo Authority and funded by the Central Government.
- Prime Minister Narendra Modi has announced the launch of Project Lion, which involves the conservation of the Asiatic lion and its landscape as a whole.
- Project Lion will promote habitat development, incorporate modern techniques in lion management and address issues of diseases in the lion and its allied species through advanced worldwide research and veterinary care.
- Asiatic lions, once found in East Asia from Palamau to Persia (Iran), are facing extinction due to indiscriminate hunting and habitat loss.
- By the late 1890s, there were less than 50 lions left in the Gir forests of Gujarat. At present, the number of Asiatic lions has increased to more than 500 after the timely implementation of strict security measures by the state and central government.
- In the last census in the year 2015, 1648.79 sq. km. The number of Asiatic lions has been recorded at 523 in Gir Protected Area Network.
- IUCN Status: Endangered
- Protection: Protected under Schedule I of the Wildlife (Protection) Act 1972 and Appendix-I of CITES.
Source – PIB