Thursday, February 2, 2023

SHC hears plea against wildlife hunting in Achhro Thar

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KARACHI: The wildlife department has been handed over to province but hunting fields for international dignitaries have been in domain of the foreign ministry, Sindh High Court informed during hearing of a petition against hunting at Sanghar’s Achhro Thar, ARY News reported on Tuesday.

The petitioner, lawyers and Secretary Sindh Wildlife Department appeared in the high court for hearing of a petition against wildlife hunting in Achhro Thar.

“Foreign nationals from UAE and other countries of the Middle East visit for hunting in Achhro Thar,” the petitioner’s lawyer said. “Their arrival makes life of local people miserable,” lawyer said.

“The hunting permits apart of harming wildlife, also result in harassment of local population,” the counsel argued.

“Which law allows the wildlife hunting,” the court questioned the secretary wildlife department in the hearing.

“It is not the domain of the wildlife department to issue permits for hunting. The wildlife portfolio has been handed over to the province under the 18th Amendment, but it is the foreign ministry having hunting fields for international dignitaries,” secretary told the court.

“How is it possible under the law, which allows the province to hold the portfolio but hunting fields held by the federal government,” the bench questioned. “How the provincial department fits in this scheme,” court asked. “We only enforce the order from the federation,” secretary said.

“The provincial department only have a post office or postman role,” the bench remarked. “You permit them to harass the people? You will tell the court in the next hearing about the law under which the permission given,” the court said.

The bench adjourned further hearing of the case for next four weeks.

It is to be mentioned here that the Sindh government in a recent notification decided to keep close the hunting season of native game birds and water fowls on the grounds of natural calamity However, there was no mention to the widely criticised falconry organised for foreign dignitaries and trophy hunting.

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