Congratulations Gulf News!
Reading your online news (gulfnews.com) makes me very happy. As an observer, Gulf News acts on solving problems is laudable, in various sectors of consumer disputes and issues apart from their primary media services of publishing news. Gulf News is doing an excellent service to the public with a social commitment. Keep it up guys, and I really appreciate the efforts you guys are taking through these tough times.
From Mr D Nagh
Global Tiger Day is observed every year on July 29 to raise awareness about tiger conservation
The tiger is among the strongest and most beautiful species of the cat family on this planet (“India: Viral video shows traffic comes to a halt in Madhya Pradesh after a tiger rests in the middle of a flyover”, Gulf News, July15). Millions of people around the globe love their majestic characteristics. Moreover, they are known as the “Umbrella Species” as they are responsible for maintaining an ecological balance in multiple habitats. Despite enjoying such popularity, they are one of the most endangered species in the world. The World Wildlife Fund has listed the tiger as one of the 10 key creatures facing imminent extinction. Thirteen tiger range countries recognized the great importance of conserving these awe-inspiring creatures on July 29, 2010, at the Saint Petersburg Tiger Summit in Russia, where they signed a landmark agreement to raise awareness about the decreasing tiger population globally. Since then, the International Tiger Day has been celebrated every year on July 29 to promote tiger conservation and protection of their habitats. It is commemorated annually with the theme “Their Survival is in Our Hands”.
From the beginning of the twentieth century, around 95 per cent of the tiger population has been lost in various activities like poaching. In fact, it is widely believed that 60 per cent of the world’s total population of wild tigers resides in India. According to various estimates, the number of wild tigers around the world went down from approximately 30,000 in 1939 to about 3,900 in 2020, out of which roughly 2,230 are in India. About only 100 white tigers are left in India. These shocking statistics show us why the thirteen tiger range countries, through the Saint Petersburg Declaration, created Tx2, the global goal to double the tiger population by 2022.
Of all the tigers, the Royal Bengal Tiger (the national animal of India) fascinates me the most. One of the fastest mammals in the world, it is the joy and pride of India. It is worshipped by some, protected by many and killed by others. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) says that these tigers are “poisoned, shot, trapped and snared” for their teeth, claws, skin and bones.
To protect these animals, India’s Project Tiger was launched, and laws against poaching and killing have been passed. However, illegal activities continue to date, and the population of these majestic animals is still rapidly dwindling. It shows that current conservation efforts are not enough. We need to play relevant roles to protect these charismatic animals and save them from extinction in every little way possible. We must preserve its habitats and try to stop poaching. It is such a pleasant sight to watch this fascinating animal walk in all its royalty. Let us join hands to “live and let live” these charming species.
From Ms Rose Vincent
Jammu and Kashmir celebrates one year of progress and prosperity
The Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir will celebrate its first year of foundation on August 5 (“ Photos: Sky-high outdoor classroom for children in COVID-19-hit Indian Kashmir”, Gulf News). Last year on this day, the erstwhile state was reorganised as two Union Territories, one that of Jammu and Kashmir and another of Ladakh. Ever since a flurry of new social welfare schemes has been pursued with diligence by the respective local authorities.
These include schemes for old age pension, merit scholarships for students, supplementary nutrition for lactating mothers and pregnant women, and for keeping thousands of children safe and healthy staying at public and private orphanages. Also, all the residents can reap the benefit of a comprehensive and free medical health insurance. The result has been a phenomenal rise in the happiness index in the region, which has been in the news for violence all these years.
More than 800,000 people have benefited from pension distributed under the Integrated Social Security Scheme (ISSS). Those who have not been covered under the scheme have been included in the National Social Assistance Program (NSAP). In this centrally sponsored scheme, the pension is directly credited to their bank accounts. More than 1,50,000 persons have benefited from this scheme. The beneficiaries have been given an additional Rs500 (Dh25) per person in addition to their regular pension this year. These beneficiaries include widows and persons with disabilities.
Many high-profile projects are underway. These projects will link far-flung villages with the mainstream, connect millions of people to better opportunities and prosperity and transform Kashmir into a sought-after destination for tourists as well as entrepreneurs, and generate employment opportunities.
From Mr Abdul Latif