'Illegal and not permissible': India's only elephant rescue-center gets noticeLast updated on Dec 05, 2018, 02:14 pm
India's only elephant rescue center, run by an NGO in Mathura, has been served a notice by the Central Zoo Authority (CZA) questioning its legality.
Under the Central Wild Life Act 1972, all zoos have to take prior permission from CZA.
According to the notice served, NGO Wildlife SOS did not seek prior approval.
However, the NGO clarified that their center wasn't a zoo.
NGO says operations in collaboration with UP forest department
A Wildlife SOS spokesperson has clarified that their center operations were in collaboration with the Uttar Pradesh forest department.
The notice was served after animal rights activists Naresh Kadyan and Gauri Maulekhi complained to the authority alleging violations.
They have enlisted a number of activities, from fund collections through website to charging of fees from visitors, which violate the prescribed norms.
'Wildlife SOS is illegally operating and collecting charges from visitors'
The notice stated, "...it is observed that the Wildlife SOS on its website is promoting visitors to the illegally operating Elephant Conservation Center Mathura and collecting charges from visitors."
It added, "The elephant center in Mathura is established without the prior permission of the Authority and operating without obtaining recognition by this Authority. Therefore the said facility is illegal and not permissible for operation."
Kadyan alleged NGO's bear shelter home in Agra also illegal
The notice is signed by Dr. DN Singh, member secretary of CZA, who retired a few days ago.
"The center for elephants didn't comply with the terms and conditions. Besides many people were shown on their website playing with cubs," said Kadyan.
He said the NGO's bear shelter in Agra is also illegal and that bears have been traded and purchased, which isn't acceptable.