Himachal Government has now tabled in the Vidhan Sabha the notification of permission of selective killing of Blue Bulls (Nilgai) and its inclusion in the list of crop damaging species.

The Government had brought out the notification earlier on Tuesday when the farmers under the banner of Himachal Kisan Sabha had also organised a huge rally in Una district demanding the declaration of Blue Bulls as a vermin.

The Blue Bulls would now be added to the list of wild life species causing damage to the crops like Wild Boars, Porcupine, Sambhar, Cheetal, Hare, Jackal, Monkey, Black Deer and Parrots. The Government had felt that the people were genuinely aggrieved due to the over population and un-proportionate growth of blue bulls in the lower regions of the State.

In the State Assembly on Friday Forest Minister JP Nadda said the Government has allowed their selective killings by villagers in Nurpur, Una, Bilaspur, Nalagarh and Ponta Sahib Forest ranges. The minister said only the affected people having proper permit of killing issued from area divisional forest officer and range officers have been authorized for killing the blue bull.

The forest department would not execute the killing of the animal. It would only dispose of the dead animals, Mr. Nadda added.

Answering another question by Congress member Kaul Singh, the Forest Minister said that as per order of the Supreme Court, after rationalisation process, there will be 24 wildlife sanctuaries, 5 national parks and 3 conservation reserves covering total 8409.72 square kilometre area.

At present, the State has 33 sanctuaries and two national parks. After redrawing the boundaries, the sanctuaries would be reduced to 32 but the number of national parks would be increased to four. The total protected area in the state would increase to 15.44 percent from the existing 12 percent after rationalization, he said.

Mr. Nadda said that as many as 767 villages having a population of about one lakh would be out of the protected area. This rationalization proposal of the state government has been approved by the standing committee of the National Board for Wildlife on September 16, 2009, he said.