Uttarakhand News

Corbett, Rajaji Tiger reserves suffer acute staff shortage in Uttarakhand

Despite being famous around the world as the natural habitat of Royal Bengal tigers and Asiatic Wild elephants, the Corbett Tiger Reserve in Nainital district and Rajaji Tiger Reserve in Haridwar district suffer from acute staff shortage. The two forest reserves are battling a shortage of 40% of staff including forest guards, forest rangers, forest section officers which are essential for wildlife conservation and management, according to the authorities. At least 13 posts of forest rangers have long been lying vacant in 33 forest ranges of the reserves.

We suffer from around 40 per cent shortage of frontline staff. Against a sanctioned strength of 149 forest guards we have only 86. The sanctioned strength for forest rangers in Rajaji is 14 against which we have only 10. When considered in the light of the fact that Rajaji Tiger Reserve is entrusted with the task of conserving and managing 34 tigers and 360 elephants besides a variety of other wildlife in an area spread over 854 KM, we must overcome the shortage at the earliest.

– Sanatan Sonkar, Rajaji Tiger Reserve (RTR) Director

Last year, the government cleared by the recruitment bylaws for forest guards were cleared by the state government. The forest authorities sent the appropriate requirements but are still waiting for the reply as of today. The forest authorities are forced to employ around 300 daily wage laborers to compensate for the shortage of forest guards.

Inputs from Outlook India