School and college students in West Bengal will be among key stakeholders in the national project to develop a conservation action plan for the Gangetic River Dolphin to save the national aquatic animal from extinction, an official said on Wednesday.
The Wildlife Institute of India project is part of the recovery programme of four endangered species -- Great Indian Bustard, Dugong, Manipur Deer (Sangai) and the Gangetic Dolphin -- initiated by the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change.
State Chief Wildlife Warden Pradeep Vyas said on Wednesday that he had recently discussed with the WII inclusion of the fishing community and schools along the Ganga in Bengal.
"The idea is to have awareness campaigns among the student community because they are the ones who will carry forward the work later on as enlightened citizens. We will hold a workshop in March with students, fisher folk and other stakeholders to chalk out how the project will be implemented," Vyas told IANS.
The project would develop monitoring protocols for River Dolphins and river fauna, quality assessment of river habitat and assessment of invasive species.
It encompasses Assam, Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal and Arunachal Pradesh and aims to develop recovery plan for Gangetic dolphins and their habitats in India and engage stakeholders in the conservation of river ecosystems in India.