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New Delhi : Union Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan on August 12, 2017, launched ‘Gaj Yatra’ here, a nationwide campaign to protect elephants on the occasion of World Elephant Day. The campaign is planned to cover 12 elephant range states.
Addressing the gathering on the occasion, Dr Vardhan urged the people to prepare a strategy for a more even distribution of the elephant population in all the states of the country. The Minister emphasised that an attempt must be made to bring to an end the chapter of man-animal conflict. He added that a war must be waged against poachers and hunters who harm elephants and other wildlife, according to a PIB release. Calling for proactive, innovative and out-of-the-box ideas, Dr Vardhan said that efforts for elephant conservation must bring about a qualitative improvement by the next World Elephant Day.
Dr Vardhan stressed on the need to broad-base the movement for conservation of elephants and to involve people from all walks of life in the conservation of elephants and other wildlife. The Minister said that an effort would be made to install the models of elephants being carved out from waste material at prominent public places like Parliament, Rashtrapati Bhawan and on the Ministry’s premises Indira Paryavaran Bhawan.
The Environment Minister released the All India Census 2017 report on elephants as also the Agreed Points of Action on Trans-Boundary Conservation of Elephants by India and Bangladesh and a document titled ‘Right of Passage’ on elephant corridors in India, according to the PIB release.

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