- Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 extends to the whole of India, except the State of Jammu and Kashmir which has its own wildlife act.
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Wildlife Protection Act, 1972:
- The Wildlife Protection Act, 1972 is an Act of the Parliament of India enacted for protection of plants and animal species.
- Before 1972, India only had five designated national parks.
- The act provides for the protection of wild animals, birds and plants and matters connected with them, with a view to ensure the ecological and environmental security of India.
- Extends to the whole of India, except the State of Jammu and Kashmir which has its own wildlife act
- It provides for prohibition on use of animal traps except under certain circumstances
- It provides for protection of hunting rights of the Scheduled Tribes in Andaman and Nicobar Islands
- It has provisions for the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
It has six schedules which give varying degrees of protection
- Species listed in Schedule I and part II of Schedule II get absolute protection — offences under these are prescribed the highest penalties
- Species listed in Schedule III and Schedule IV are also protected, but the penalties are much lower
- Schedule V includes the animals which may be hunted
- The plants in Schedule VI are prohibited from cultivation and planting
Provisions of hunting under the Act:
- This section describes what constitutes hunting and the intent to hunt. Hunting wild animals is prohibited under this act.
- No person shall hunt any wild animal specified in Schedule, I, II, III and IV except as provided under law.
- Hunting of Wild animals to be permitted in certain cases.
- Any wild animal killed or wounded in defence of any person shall be Government property.
- The Chief Wildlife Warden can grant permission by an order in writing stating the reasons therefor, to any person, on payment of such fee as may be prescribed, which shall entitle the holder of such permit to hunt, subject to such conditions like education, scientific research and scientific management.
- The authorised officer may, subject to any general or special order of the State Government can suspend or cancel any licence granted under the Act.