Press Trust of india

India showed to world environment protection and development possible together: PM

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New Delhi: India has shown to the world that it is possible to protect the environment and ensure economic development simultaneously, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said.

India is observing the 68th wildlife week from October 2-8.

“It is possible to ensure both economic development and environment protection through proper policies and better implementation. India has shown this to the world,” the PM said in a written message to the people of the country in Hindi on October 6.

The Environment Ministry also tweeted the message on Friday.

PM Modi said humans, environment and wildlife complement each other and more attention should be paid to the conservation of wildlife and biodiversity in the changing environment.

He said India added 259 new protected areas for wildlife in the last eight years, and the forest areas have also expanded rapidly.

Notable works are being done under the ‘Namami Gange’ mission to clean the Ganga, a witness to our glorious culture, and to conserve the aquatic life in the holy river and improve the river ecosystem, he said.

The prime minister said it is heartening to see that the country has achieved the target of doubling the tiger population ahead of schedule.

“At one time, there was a threat to the existence of the one-horned rhinoceros in Assam but their numbers have also increased now. There has also been a large increase in the number of Asiatic lions in India and the population of elephants is also increasing continuously,” he said.

PM Modi said time presents only few opportunities to humanity to rectify the past and build a new future.

“One such moment was the arrival of cheetahs in the country as part of the world’s largest inter-continental rehabilitation programme. I am sure the mutual cooperation between the forest department and the general public will make it a success,” he said.

The cheetah has come back to India 70 years after the species was declared extinct in the country in 1952.

The large carnivore got completely wiped out from the country due to over-hunting and habitat loss.

PM Modi released the first batch of eight cheetahs – five females and three males – from Namibia into a quarantine enclosure at the Kuno National Park in Madhya Pradesh on his birthday on September 17.

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