20 October 2022.
The Tamil Nadu Government launched a State-Level Committee for Vulture Conservation (SLCVC) for coordination within the government for the implementation of the Action Plan for Vulture Conservation (APVC) 2020-2025.
- The formation of the State-Level Committee for Vulture Conservation (SLCVC) was proposed by the national action for the protection of vultures in India, which witnessed a 96 per cent decline between 1993 and 2003.
- In line with this proposal, the Tamil Nadu government has set up the SLCVC to create an institutional framework for the conservation of vultures in the state.
- The committee will be headed by the principal chief conservator of forests of the state. Other members include the director of animal husbandry department and the director of drug controller, the food safety and drug administration department, and key members from non-profits focusing on wildlife conservation.
- The committee will assess the carcasses of cattle and wild animals so that harmful drugs are not ingested by vultures.
- It will also ensure the scientific management of carcass dumps.
- The committee will work towards setting up regulations for the ban of drugs that are toxic to vultures, especially the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) that are banned under the Vulture Action Plan (2020-25).
- It will also be responsible for the creation of more breeding grounds and rescue centres for the raptors in Tamil Nadu, as well as the regular monitoring of the population in the southern state.
- It will also take part in the national-level vulture census and identify locations for undertaking the survey and creating “vulture safe zones” in the state.
- The Annual Report of Action Plan for Vulture Conservation will also be created by this committee.
- Tamil Nadu hosts oriental white backed vultures, long-billed vultures, red-headed vultures, which are listed as critically endangered by the IUCN. It also houses the endangered Egyptian vultures.
- Sigur plateau in Mudumalai is one of the last remaining regions with a vulture population. Proposals have been made to designate this plateau and nearby regions as a wildlife sanctuary for vultures.