Interactive session on human-elephant conflict in Goalpara district

Interactive session about human-elephant conflicts in Goalpara district

Aaranyak’s resource personnel highlighted the need for media attention on the human-wildlife interface in Goalpara with particular emphasis on the frequent human-elephant interaction.

A reputed expert on elephant conservation from Aaranyak Dr Bibhutiprasad Lahkar informed the media about the larger picture and possible ways of mitigating the threat to wild elephants.

Jayanta Pathak (manager of the Environment Education and Capacity Building Division of Aaranyak) addressed the discussion. She spoke out about the need for media professionals to go the extra mile to cover issues related to biodiversity conservation and to maintain the current trend and challenges in environmental journalism. Pathak exhorted the media staff to make sustained efforts to report on issues related conservation of biodiversity, protection of wildlife habitats and other environmental journalism challenges.

Bijay Sankar Boora, a senior journalist, addressed the workshop and pointed out that journalists play a limited, but crucial role in creating synergy between various stakeholders so as to support sustained biodiversity conservation efforts.

He stated that because it is the citizens at large who can have a major say in reaching conservation goals and the mass media, as mass communicators, must inform, educate, and promote the various aspects of biodiversity which sustains life.

Media personnel were asked a variety of questions about the challenges they encounter in reporting on aspects related to biodiversity conservation as well as human-wildlife conflicts. A press release stated that they suggested holding a workshop to educate villagers about wildlife conflict, especially Goalpara’s alarming human-elephant interface.