LHC gives commission time to submit report on black bucks in Punjab

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LAHORE: The Lahore High Court (LHC) on Monday granted a commission, working to save black bucks, two months to submit its report about the state of the endangered animal in Punjab.

The high court was hearing a petition filed by Sheraz Zaka Advocate seeking ban over the implementation of hunting black bucks in Punjab.

A single bench of the high court comprises of Justice Shams Mehmood Mirza heard the petition.

The court in a previous hearing sought recommendations from the Punjab government and the commission, working to save black bucks.

Dr Pervez Hassan, head of the commission, sought time to submit the report. The bench granted the commission two months to file its report in the court.

The bench sought recommendations for safety of black bucks in Punjab along with the precautionary steps to halt the illegal hunting of the endangered animal.

Dr Hassan informed the court that the body surveying about the number of black bucks in Bahawalpur and sought some time to submit report in the court.

A bench of the high court had imposed ban on the hunting of black bucks in the province of Punjab in May last year.

The bench had observed that according to convention of international treaty of endangered specie, black bucks was considered to be vulnerable specie which was near to extinction.

In Pakistan the black buck lives in desert areas, such as Cholistan and Thar. Today the blackbuck is an occasional straggler along the eastern desert border areas of the country.

Presently, there is no permanent resident population today in Pakistan. During the late 1970’s and early 80’s small populations of black bucks were brought from Texas, USA to start a reintroduction program of the animal in Pakistan.

These projects have had some success and now there are small captive populations of blackbuck in 3-4 locations, particularly in Kirthar and lal Sohanra National Parks.

At present around 500 animals exist at Mehrano reserve of Mirs of Khairpur, 110 at Khangur, Ghotki and 70 at New Jatoi in Nawab Shah, sources said.

Except these, some animals are kept in different zoos, wildlife centres and in possession of private individuals.

At present around 1500 Black Bucks are reared in captivity and surviving in Punjab and Sindh provinces of Pakistan.