Govt issued clear instructions for Houbara Bustard hunting: Senate informed

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ISLAMABAD, Jan 18 (APP): Minister for Law and Justice Zahid
Hamid on Wednesday informed the Senate that the federal government
has issued clear instructions for hunting of migratory bird Houbara
Briefing the House in response to a calling attention notice, the minister said the licenses is issued by provincial government. However, the federal government issues general instructions about hunting.
He said Houbara Bustard migrates to Thal, Thar, Cholistan and areas of Balochistan and KPK during winter season and the federal government and ministry of foreign affairs only have role in assignment of hunting areas in consultation with the respective provincial governments.
He said after assignment of hunting sites the respective
embassies are informed to contact the provincial government for seeking hunting license. With the assignment of hunting sites, a detailed code of conduct is also sent to concerned embassies, he added.
Zahid Hamid said the hunting season has been declared for three months with ten days in this period declared for sustainable hunting with an allocation of 100 birds bag limit. “They are allocated camping sites and are restricted not to use fire arms or hit chicks and eggs
while netting is also prohibited.”
He said an official of wildlife department accompanies the hunters and it is ensured that no flora or fauna in the area is damaged and a photographic record of hunting is also maintained.
The minister informed that camps are established at leveled and clean land without damaging any agriculture area. Septic tanks are built for disposal of waste which are filled with land up to one meter depth on conclusion of the hunting season.
He said with the funding received from the hunters, development projects are executed in respective areas in consultation with the local administration.
The minister clarified that federal government issues no ‘No Objection Certificate’ as it is domain of the provinces as hunting was going on in designated
areas. Even the security is also provided by the provincial governments.
The minister also mentioned to umbrella guidelines by Ministry of Climate Change for hunting of this rare species while a Houbara Bustard and Migratory Birds Endowment Fund has also been set up for which the government has released Rs 250 million.
He said under this plan the government focuses on conservation initiatives, protect endangered species and sanctuaries, launch community based development projects, raises awareness and build capacity of officials.
He said community participation is also ensured in this programme besides effective implementation of guidelines for hunting.
Earlier, Senators Sardar Fateh Muhammad Hasni, Ilyas Ahmed Bilour, Nauman Wazir Khttak, Usman Khan Kakar and Rozi Khan Kakar had drawn the attention of the minister towards this issue claiming lands in Balochistan were illegally occupied for hunting by representatives of
the federal government deputed for security puposes.
The members had also mentioned to problems of local
community due to security measures and damage to their crops.
Chairman Senate Mian Raza Rabbani taking cognizance of the situation, directed Minister for Law and Justice to sit with the Senators and address their apprehensions.
“Let the minister sit with them and get first hand information to address their grievances so no unpleasant incident occurs in the area,” the Chairman said.