Let's put technology to the best use

By mid day correspondent | Mumbai

Updated: Jan 17, 2019, 05:40 IST

The more worrying aspects though are that authorities suspect three more people may be involved in the case. It is important that the network is cracked and dismantled. It is highly improbable that there is just one poacher

Investigations into a poaching case following the recovery of snares have revealed that a gunman was on the prowl inside the protected area in the city's green lung, the Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP), a front page report in this paper stated.

There has been consistent reporting in this paper on the threat to wildlife in SGNP. This recent report focused on how camera traps installed to study wild cat behaviour ended up capturing a poacher boldly walking in the forest with a big air gun slung on his shoulder.

The more worrying aspects though are that authorities suspect three more people may be involved in the case. It is important that the network is cracked and dismantled. It is highly improbable that there is just one poacher.

This smacks of a well-oiled group of at least three or four people. If not together, they could be operating separately. The case has shown that technology is key to nabbing poachers. As the latter get more sophisticated and brazen in their methods, we have a race on our hands.

Technology has to keep up with all crime, and poaching is one of them. Camera trapping as is shown by this case, is a good way to study animals. It has a two-pronged benefit though, it is also useful as vigilance against poachers and suspicious forest activity. Then, it is elementary my dear Watson that forest authorities get enough funds for camera traps and technological surveillance.

These traps need to be regularly checked and maintained for optimum efficiency. They cannot and should not be allowed to go to seed, like it happens to other technological infra for public service. Keep it sharp and let the cameras roll well as aids in the steady disintegration of this organised crime pattern.

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