Recently within very short span of time two elephants died of cruelty of men's behavior in two different areas in Bangladesh. These are very shameful events occurred and appropriate authority should take these incidents to their notice and take proper actions against the persons who are responsible for this. We know environmental issues are very much important nowadays. World leaders are very much concerned about this and Bangladesh is not out of this process as the Prime Minister took very active part in COP 26 held in Glasgow, Scotland few days back. To save and protect environment, ecology world leaders expressed their pledges to reduce carbon emission. In this respect environment and ecology is now the vibrant world issue. We should take it to our consideration that this world is not meant for human being only. There exists others creatures too and they have every right to be in this planate too. For that reason mankind has responsibility to do something for the protection of other creatures. Otherwise, the environment and ecology will go further deterioration and it must not be in near future as what it is now in today.
Often we see many news in the national newspapers regarding cruelty to the animal happened in different areas in the country. Most of the incidents are related with endangered animals of the forest. Moreover, some people are also very much cruel to the domestic animals too. Though we know that in the law of our country there still exists a penal section of cruelty to the animals for the protection of the animal. But in reality there is hardly any practice of that section of law. For that reason a good number of people even do not think of that cruelty to the animal is a kind of penal offence.
Recently two incidents have come to the notice of the many people and these incidents have created sensations in the mind of the people. Recently a big elephant was killed by the villagers at Sherpur area who are not that much aware about the importance of wild animal and ecology. That elephant was electrocuted by the barbed electrified wire fixed as the fence of the crop fields of that area. That area is the natural habitat of elephants. Many elephants wander in this area crisscrossing Indo-Bangla common border. People of this area are doing harm to the elephants in the name of the protection of their crop fields from the elephants. A national daily published this with the picture of dead elephant few days back and many people encircling the dead elephant as onlookers a few meters distance. Similar incident happen in the district of Bandarban, Cox's Bazar and Chattogram. People of these area are use to fix the electric wire as trap to prevent the elephants. For that reason many elephants are killed by this sort of trap. It is a big concern for the protection of wild animal in Bangladesh. But we do not find any big outcry for these incidents from the animal lovers and environmentalists in our country.
Similarly entellus/monkeys in our country are always in trouble. Gradually the habitats of them are being squeezed. Apart from the forest areas monkeys/entellus are concentrated in some areas in the country. Those areas are Keshobpur, Madaripur, Gazipur and Dhaka Old City. Besides those areas monkeys/ entellus are also seen scattered in different places in the country. For the shortages of food those monkeys disturb local people and they steal/procure food from their surroundings. Sometimes government initiatives are also seen to provide food to the monkeys/entellus at Mugura village of Madaripur and Keshobpur of Jashore. Actually every creature of almighty has particular mission in this world and that is predefined by the almighty. And for that the ecology/environment of this planet are being protected. For the research and promotion of medicines of different diseases and virus monkeys are very essential for the experimentations. We all know this, but in general we are not that much friendly to the monkeys and other creatures. Everyone should take it to their notice that these sorts of animals have also the right to be in this world. But in reality they are being hurt by the people everywhere.
We know Fishing Cat is now an endangered animal. Few decades back this animal had been seen in the jungles of different areas in Bangladesh. But nowadays it is very rare and often we find the news in the media that fishing cat severely beaten by the villagers and ultimately it succumbed to the injury. This sort of news we get off and on. What it indicates is that this animal is very much endangered and they lack habitat and shortages of food. We all know that these animals are the complementary to the ecology and environment. The environmentalists and high-ups of the government should look into in the issue.
Fox and Jackal are also the indigenous jungle animals in our country. They are generally nocturnal in nature but in day time sometimes they come to our notice. Gradual destruction of their habitat and shortages of food they bound to come out from the jungles or bushes in day time also. The people are very much unfriendly to them in general. They kill them; hurt them, whenever they get chances. This sort of notion in our mindset should be changed. We do not know, maybe they are contributing directly or indirectly for the eco system of our country. For that reason research work should be taken. Always these animals come to our text-book with negative notion. This is the time to reconsider this so that our children should think about these animals positively.
Tigers are now only concentrated in Sundarban areas but many years back it was not unfamiliar other forests in Bangladesh. At Sundarban area tigers are also endangered. Though, the government and some other organizations are working to protect the tigers of Sundarban. The density of tigers is not in the optimum level. There is much scope to increase the tiger population in Sundarban. But for illegal hunters tigers are becoming endangered at the Sundarban areas and at the same time the other prominent animal of this forest the spotted deer are always the target of illegal hunters. Often we get the news of dead/killed tigers in the newspapers. Maybe there are some natural death of tigers but it is understood that many cases happened by the cruelty of the illegal hunters. We know and we also consider the Royal Bengal Tiger of Sundarban is our national pride and it represents the majestic notion of Bangladesh. So to protect the ecology of Sundarban we have to protect our tigers of Sundarban. The high-ups of forest department should take this issue more seriously to their consideration.
Wild cats are very familiar jungle animal in our country. Almost in every locality, presently this animal is not seen like previous time. Gradually it is extinguishing for shortages of foods and habitat. We know, for the well balanced ecology and environment a country needs more than twenty percent of its area covered by forest but at present we seriously lack this and we have less than ten percent land covered by forest and this is not an ideal situation of country like Bangladesh situated temperate and rainy areas in this part of the world.
The common jungle animals in different localities in Bangladesh are Jackal, Fox, Wild cat, Mongoose, Wild pigs, Python and many others. Apart from these there are many other birds in Bangladesh balancing the eco-system/environment by their activities. Now all these animals and birds are very much at stake for their lives and habitats. The Bengal tigers, elephants, monkeys, entellus and other animals are very much complementary to the eco-system and environment in our country. We have to admit that this world is not only for mankind, the other creatures have also right to be in this planate too. For that reason we have to initiate such steps which can strike a balance between mankind and other creatures. If that is so it would be an ideal congenial environment for animals and birds in our country. And at the end those steps will protect the nature and ecology of the country. This is the high time, policymakers should come forward.
Dr. Syed Nesar Ahmad Rumy, Retired Civil Servant, Dhaka
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