Kaziranga National Park (KZP) in Assam has become the first National Park in India to be equipped with satellite phones.
In a first-of-its-kind move to provide assistance to prevent poaching and ensure coordinated functioning, the officials of Kaziranga National Park have been provided with satellite phones.
The Chief Secretary of Assam Jishnu Barua on handed over 10 satellite phones to the forest personnel of Kaziranga National Park. The decision was taken at a meeting which was chaired by Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma at the National Park on May 27.
The meeting was also attended by Parimal Suklaibaidya, Minister for Environment and Forest, minister Atul Bora and Keshab Mahanta, director of Kaziranga National Park, deputy commissioners of adjoining districts as well as other senior department forest officials.
Kaziranga National Park which has been spread over a massive 430 sq km area and divided into six ranges in upper Assam, has certain areas with poor to no connectivity.
The satellite phones, given to the officials of Kaziranga Parks, which draw signals from the satellites instead of mobile towers will ensure connectivity in most of the remote locations. The move will also boost anti-poaching measures undertaken by the park.
• The Assam State Disaster Management Authority has procured the 10 satellite phones for the National Park at an estimated cost of Rs. 16 lakh.
• BSNL will be the service provider and the park authorities will bear the monthly expenses.
• BSNL has also trained the forest personnel to operate the satellite phones in the shadow areas where the mobile phones do not function.
Satellite phones give an edge to forest personnel:
Forest and Environment Minister Parimal Suklaibaidya thanked the Chief Minister of Assam for his promptness in providing the satellite phones.
He thanked the CM for realizing the communication bottlenecks and taking prompt action to provide satellite phones to park officials. He added that these phones will be immensely useful for coordination as they are a necessity in the sprawling Kaziranga National Park.
The satellite phones to the forest personnel will give an edge to them over the poachers and also during the emergencies like floods.