Indian tent turtle is listed in Schedule –I of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972 and is thereby provided the highest degree of protection. There are no reports to indicate that the Indian tent turtle is on the verge of extinction due to illegal mining in Narmada River.
The Government has taken several steps to protect wildlife and its habitats including for Indian tent turtle species. Important steps taken in this regard include:
Protected Areas, viz., National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries, Conservation Reserves and Community Reserves have been created in the country covering important habitats to provide better protection to wildlife, including threatened species and their habitat.
Financial assistance is provided to the State/Union Territory Governments under the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of ‘Integrated Development of Wildlife Habitats’, for providing better protection to wildlife and improvement of habitat.
The Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972 provides for stringent punishment for violation of its provisions. The Act also provides for forfeiture of any equipment, vehicle or weapon that is used for committing wildlife offence(s).
The local communities are involved in conservation measures through eco-development activities which help the forest departments in protection of wildlife.
The Wildlife Crime Control Bureau (WCCB) coordinates with State/UTs and other enforcement agencies to gather intelligence about poaching and unlawful trade in wild animals and animal articles.
The Zoological Survey has not conducted any survey in the Narmada River on impact of illegal mining on Indian tent turtle and its effect on river ecosystem.
This information was given by the Minister of State for Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Shri Ashwini Kumar Choubey in a written reply in Rajya Sabha.