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Dolphin Safaris launched in Ganga to encourage Ecotourism on Dolphin Day

Dolphin Safaris launched in Ganga to encourage Ecotourism on Dolphin Day

Under the Wildlife Institute of India-National Mission for Clean Ganga project ‘Planning and Management for Aquatic Species Conservation and Maintenance of Ecosystem Services in the Ganga River Basin for a clean Ganga’, Ganga River Dolphin Day was celebrated at six sites along the Ganga river namely, Bijnor, Brijghat, Prayagraj Varanasi, (Uttar Pradesh) Kahalgaon (Bihar) and Bandel (West Bengal). This is a joint venture of WII, NMCG and State Forest Departments, for sustainable tourism linking livelihood through dolphin conservation for ecotourism along the Ganga river. Every year 5th October is celebrated as Ganga River Dolphin Day as this day Ganga Dolphins were declared National Aquatic Animal.

On this occasion through a video message, Jal Shakti Minister, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat congratulated the nation and informed that the population of Gagentic Dolphins has increased in recent years. He also appealed to the masses to join Dolphin conservation campaign while emphasizing the importance of biodiversity in rejuvenation of river Ganga.

 The highlight of the celebration was the launch of the Ganga river Dolphin Jalaj Safaris by Shri. Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, Director General National Mission for Clean Ganga at Bijnor Barrage, Muzaffarnagar district, Uttar Pradesh. Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, pointed out that such initiatives will go a long way in making the people aware of the biodiversity of Ganga river and importance of conserving our National Aquatic Animal. At the same time, the initiative will link local livelihood with Ganga conservation.

The Ganga Praharis in all the sites have been trained in biodiversity based eco-tourism and will take the tourist on boat rides to view Dolphin and other biodiversity present in the Ganga River.

“My Ganga My Dolphin” campaign was flagged off by World Wildlife fund and Uttar Pradesh Forest Department in association with NMCG. In this campaign, Dolphin census will be conducted in 250 km stretch from Bijnore to Narora, many community awareness campaigns will be carried out and young volunteers will be encouraged to enroll as Ganga Mitras. This Dolphin Day was an occasion to revive over all biodiversity of Ganga and not just Dolphins, to bring focus to this Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra also released three turtles at Hyderpur wetland and felicitated Ganga Mitras who are part of the initiative. Since 2012, UP Forest Department and WWF-India have been engaging with communities for identifying and rescuing turtle nests from riparian farmland. There was also discussion about making an interpretation center at Hyderpur and make it a Ramsar site.

Also, A Turtle’s Day Out, a story by Jeevanesh Sawhney and illustrations by Malika Arora was launched by Mr. Mishra at the event.

There has been noticeable improvement in the Dolphin population in Ganga river especially in the stretch from Bijnore to Narora. Local volunteers reported seeing many Dolphins in Ballia district during recent cleanliness and awareness drive on the eve of Gandhi Jayanti. Namami Gange mission is taking major steps to improve biodiversity of Ganga and her tributaries.

The Commissioner, Saharanpur, Shri Sanjay Kumar and Dr. Ruchi Badola, Scientist and Nodal Officer, Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun were also present at the event.

Dolphin Safaris launched in Ganga to encourage Ecotourism on Dolphin Day

Dolphin Safaris launched in Ganga to encourage Ecotourism on Dolphin Day

Under the Wildlife Institute of India-National Mission for Clean Ganga project ‘Planning and Management for Aquatic Species Conservation and Maintenance of Ecosystem Services in the Ganga River Basin for a clean Ganga’, Ganga River Dolphin Day was celebrated at six sites along the Ganga river namely, Bijnor, Brijghat, Prayagraj Varanasi, (Uttar Pradesh) Kahalgaon (Bihar) and Bandel (West Bengal). This is a joint venture of WII, NMCG and State Forest Departments, for sustainable tourism linking livelihood through dolphin conservation for ecotourism along the Ganga river. Every year 5th October is celebrated as Ganga River Dolphin Day as this day Ganga Dolphins were declared National Aquatic Animal.

On this occasion through a video message, Jal Shakti Minister, Shri Gajendra Singh Shekhawat congratulated the nation and informed that the population of Gagentic Dolphins has increased in recent years. He also appealed to the masses to join Dolphin conservation campaign while emphasizing the importance of biodiversity in rejuvenation of river Ganga.

 The highlight of the celebration was the launch of the Ganga river Dolphin Jalaj Safaris by Shri. Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, Director General National Mission for Clean Ganga at Bijnor Barrage, Muzaffarnagar district, Uttar Pradesh. Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, pointed out that such initiatives will go a long way in making the people aware of the biodiversity of Ganga river and importance of conserving our National Aquatic Animal. At the same time, the initiative will link local livelihood with Ganga conservation.

The Ganga Praharis in all the sites have been trained in biodiversity based eco-tourism and will take the tourist on boat rides to view Dolphin and other biodiversity present in the Ganga River.

“My Ganga My Dolphin” campaign was flagged off by World Wildlife fund and Uttar Pradesh Forest Department in association with NMCG. In this campaign, Dolphin census will be conducted in 250 km stretch from Bijnore to Narora, many community awareness campaigns will be carried out and young volunteers will be encouraged to enroll as Ganga Mitras. This Dolphin Day was an occasion to revive over all biodiversity of Ganga and not just Dolphins, to bring focus to this Shri Rajiv Ranjan Mishra also released three turtles at Hyderpur wetland and felicitated Ganga Mitras who are part of the initiative. Since 2012, UP Forest Department and WWF-India have been engaging with communities for identifying and rescuing turtle nests from riparian farmland. There was also discussion about making an interpretation center at Hyderpur and make it a Ramsar site.

Also, A Turtle’s Day Out, a story by Jeevanesh Sawhney and illustrations by Malika Arora was launched by Mr. Mishra at the event.

There has been noticeable improvement in the Dolphin population in Ganga river especially in the stretch from Bijnore to Narora. Local volunteers reported seeing many Dolphins in Ballia district during recent cleanliness and awareness drive on the eve of Gandhi Jayanti. Namami Gange mission is taking major steps to improve biodiversity of Ganga and her tributaries.

The Commissioner, Saharanpur, Shri Sanjay Kumar and Dr. Ruchi Badola, Scientist and Nodal Officer, Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun were also present at the event.

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