Animal deaths at safari park

Sheer negligence exposed

Published : 08 Feb 2022 08:48 PM | Updated : 09 Feb 2022 06:12 PM

The death incident of 11 zebras, one lioness and a tiger at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Safari Park in Gazipur has exposed gross negligence in the administration system. Such death incident of animals at safari park is unprecedented, unnatural and regretful. The deaths of these animals in such a short period are not acceptable at all. 

The animal died between January 2 and January 24, reducing the number of zebras at Safari Park to 22. The project director, veterinary officer and in-charge of the park have been removed from their posts. Besides, a five-member probe body has also been formed, asking it to submit a report by 10 days. Apart from these, a team of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) visited the Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Safari Park in Gazipur on Monday to probe the deaths of several animals, including zebras.

It is alleged that the project director and veterinary officials, staffs and technicians assigned to address the health and welfare needs of every species of animal in park did not discharged their duties and responsibilities properly. However, only removal of the officials concerned cannot be solution to this end. In this regard, the ministries concerned should appoint animal health specialists to know the causes of the deaths of the animals.

Exemplary measures must be taken based on 

the report by the investigation committees 

formed by the ministry and CID immediately

Since long, mismanagement, irregularities, corruption and authorities’ negligence have turned safari park and country’s most zoos including national one into dangerous places for the wild animals.

Considering the issue seriously, print and electronic media ran stories and editorial several times, while the ministries concerned also came up with note of warning, frequently saying exemplary action would be taken against those involved in negligence that caused deaths of different animals. But the authorities concerned did not pay heed to ministries’ instruction. Therefore, if such the trend continues, the situation will take a serious turn in near future. 

The government has established Bangabandhu Safari Park in Gazipur aimed at protecting the historic Modhupur Shal Forests as well its the biodiversity. It has been established with some objectives, including conservation of forests, wild species and biodiversity, side by side promoting eco-tourism. Keeping it in mind, steps will have to be taken for conserving rare and endangered wild species, improving biodiversity of the forest.

Safari park and zoos are important places for people to learn about animals as these provide a lot of educational information about animals, their habitats and habits. Therefore, the government will have to be strict in protecting and preserving wild animals. And exemplary measures must be taken based on the report by the investigation committees formed by the ministry and CID immediately.