KOCHI, May 17 � The one-horned rhinos in Assam�s Manas Wildlife Sanctuary are faced with the threat of extinction within 30 years if the authorities fail to crack down on poaching with all the powers at their disposal, warns a UN body, reports PTI.
The UNESCO World Heritage Centre says continued reintroduction of rhinos in the Manas Sanctuary � a UNESCO World Heritage Site � will not yield result unless poaching is eradicated.
It has also asked the government to increase the number of frontline staff, as proposed under the Tiger Conservation Plan, and to take appropriate actions to improve staff morale and ensure adequate equipment for them to protect the sanctuary from heavily armed poachers and insurgent groups.
In its state of conservation reports for sites facing threats, the heritage centre and International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) say, �Although poaching persists, there has been a marked improvement in controlling this threat in 2014 with the introduction of SMART patrolling.�
�Nevertheless, the report of a Rhino Population Viability Analysis by IUCN Conservation Breeding Specialist Group carried out in 2015 indicates that unless poaching is eradicated, continued reintroduction of rhinos is unlikely to result in a viable population in Manas, and rhinos could become locally extinct within 30 years,� the UN body said in its report to be presented at the 39th session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee to be held from June 28 to July 8 in Bonn, Germany.