Trade of endangered birds may land Empress Market traders in jail

Published: March 10, 2015
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Authorities decide to give sellers a few warnings this month and then launch a crackdown. PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/EXPRESS

Authorities decide to give sellers a few warnings this month and then launch a crackdown. PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/EXPRESS

KARACHI: The dealers of endangered birds and animals in Saddar’s Empress Market may find themselves in jail next month if they fail to stop the illegal trade.

In a meeting held at the commissioner’s office on Tuesday, the authorities decided to give them a few warnings this month and then launch a crackdown if they still continue to sell those birds after 30 days. The meeting was held to discuss uplifting projects for the Karachi zoo and the illegal trade of endangered birds and animals.

“Stern actions should be taken after a month against the violators,” said Commissioner Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui, who wanted to take immediate action but, on the advice of other participants, allowed a one-month warning period. The dealers will be given notices and information on the importance of indigenous birds and animals.

PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/EXPRESS

“It’s an illegal trade,” pointed out Sindh wildlife conservator Javed Ahmed Maher. “The wild species are not allowed by our department but they are being sold and purchased in the market openly,” he said.

The licences to trap birds and animals are issued by the provincial wildlife department but no licence has been issued since 2014, said Maher. “They [dealers] can sell and purchase colourful birds but not the endangered ones,” he said.

Two museums in the pipeline

The participants of the meeting also decided to establish two museums of international standards, one each at Karachi Zoo and Safari Park. The museum in Safari Park will be spread over 3,000 yards.

A four-day international seminar will be held for the betterment of the zoo in which topics, such as animal care, will be discussed.

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