GUWAHATI, March 7 - Leading wildlife NGOs working in and around Kaziranga National Park today refuted allegations made by international organisations that �excessive force� was being used at Kaziranga National Park by the park authorities to protect the one-horned rhinoceros.
Aaranyak, Wildlife Trust of India, Assam Elephant Foundation, The Corbett Foundation are of the opinion that the pressure on rhino poaching in and around Kaziranga by well organised groups is ever increasing and as such the State government has to enhance protection measures to ensure the long-term survival of the pride of Assam � the rhino.
�India is a democratic country and its elected leadership knows very well how much and where to use minimum force to protect the sanctity of its national assets. The propaganda launched by international organisations asking tourists from abroad not to visit Kaziranga is malafide and totally uncalled for. Be it Kruger or Kaziranga, or any other rhino bearing area in the world, to protect their rhinos all of them have to strengthen their security and Kaziranga is not the only rhino bearing area where gun battles between protection forces and well-armed poachers occur and casualties are accounted for due to such occurrences,� a joint statement by the organisations said.
They said that even in Africa, rhino poachers have been gunned down by park authorities during encounters.
�Then why is that international organisations have just singled out Kaziranga for its propaganda?� they asked.
The action of these international organisations are misleading and aims at demoralising the hardworking frontline staff of Kaziranga National Park and other security agencies involved in the protection of the fauna and flora of Kaziranga National Park, they added.