The GB Pant University of Agriculture and Technology, College of Veterinary and Animal Sciences had stopped breeding and sale of Japanese quails in February this year. However, in spite of being requested, the forest department has not done anything yet to take over the birds from the college or authorise the college to keep the birds.
Last month, the CVASc dean Dr GK Singh had written in a letter to chief wildlife warden SS Sharma, “Through our letter in February, we had requested you to suggest necessary guidelines regarding the rehabilitation/handing over the present stock of quails being reared in the instructional poultry farm for research/training purpose to forest department. We have not received any communication from your end in this regard,” he states.
It will be recalled that earlier this year, Animal Welfare Board of India co-opted member Gauri Maulekhi had written to the CVASc Dean informing him that the Wildlife division of the Ministry of Environment and Forest had in 2011 issued letters to the Forest secretaries and chief wildlife wardens of all States/Union Territories clarifying that the Japanese quail (coturnix japonica) is listed in the schedule IV of the Wildlife Protection Act 1972, due to which its killing is banned.
The MoEF letter stated that such animals/birds listed in any schedule of the Act (both wild and captive bred) cannot be killed, hunted or captured. Though the college has stopped breeding and sought the help of the forest department, the officials have remained apathetic. Maulekhi has requested the CWW to facilitate rehabilitation of the birds through the Wildlife Institute of India or permit in writing, the CVASc to shelter the birds.
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