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"Chief Minister Narendra Modi presides Gujarat State Board of Wildlife Emergent Meeting"
"Gujarat decides to file review petition requesting Supreme Court to reconsider translocation of Asiatic lions from Gir to Kuno in MP"

Gandhinagar, Thursday: Gujarat State Board of Wildlife at its emergent meeting presided over by ChiefMinister Narendra Modi here today decided to file review petition requesting Supreme Court to reconsider the latter’s directive for translocation shifting Asiatic lions from its only natural abode in Gir Sanctuary in Saurashtra region to Kuno-Palpur in Madhya Pradesh.

All the non-official members Board, experts in their own rights and dedicated to preservation and conservation of lions in Gujarat for umpteenth years, unanimously passed a resolution to oppose the move in the apex court.

The meeting specially recalled that it was the Supreme Court’s which had in the past rather praised the Gujarat Government’s efforts in the conservation of lion, in the course of seven affidavits filed in as many years in the apex court. The meeting also took note of the people’s uproar in and around Gir sanctuary against the latest apex court directive.

The members vociferously opposed the move, citing scientific examples and discussing likely environmental fallouts in case the lions were shifted to unfamiliar and unfavorable terrain as per the apex court directive.

They also urged that the government to take the best legal assistance to go threadbare deep into all the aspects of the case. Prima facie it appears that Supreme Court has gone by the arguments of National Wildlife Board and not what Gujarat Wildlife Board and Gujarat Government have to say. As per the federal structure of India, guaranteed under the Constitution, the contentions of the State Board do not seem to be quite considered.

The members reposed full faith in Gujarat Government’s capacity and contribution to reverse what at one time appeared to be lions going the extinction way. The Gir sanctuary continues to be the only natural abode of Asiatic lions in the world since the last 150 years, thanks to a unique emotional bond between the beasts and local populace.

Forest and Environment Minister Ganpat Vasava, Ministers of State Pradeepsinh Jadeja and Govindbhai Patel and Chief Secretary Varesh Sinha were present at the meeting. Senior Secretaries of Forest and Environment Department and Principal Chief Conservators of Forests also put across their views.

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PM reviews status of oxygen availability to ensure adequate supply
April 16, 2021
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PM Narendra Modi took a comprehensive review to ensure adequate medical grade oxygen supply in the country. Inputs from ministries like Health, DPIIT, Steel, Road Transport, etc were also shared with the PM. PM stressed that it is important to ensure synergy across ministries & state governments.

PM Modi also took a detailed review of current situation of oxygen supply and projected use in the coming 15 days across 12 high burden states (Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan). An overview of district level situation in these states was presented to the PM.

PM was informed that the Centre and States are in regular contact and estimates for projected demand have been shared with states as on 20th April, 25th April & 30th April. Accordingly, 4,880 MT, 5,619 MT and 6,593 MT have been allocated to these 12 states for meeting their projected demand as on 20th April, 25th April and 30th April, respectively.

PM was briefed about production capacity in the country to meet the rising demand. PM suggested to increase oxygen production as per capacity of each plant. It was discussed that surplus stocks of oxygen supply in steel plants are being offered from medical use.

PM urged officials to ensure seamless and free movement of tankers carrying oxygen throughout the country. The Government has exempted all interstate movement of oxygen tankers from registration of permits to enable easier movement. PM was informed that States and transporters have been asked to ensure tankers move round the clock with drivers working in shifts to ensure faster turnaround and adequate capacity to meet the surge in demand. Cylinder filling plants will also be permitted 24 hour working with necessary safeguards. The Government is allowing Industrial cylinders to be used for medical oxygen after due purging. Similarly nitrogen and argon tankers will be automatically allowed to be converted to oxygen tankers to overcome the potential shortage of tankers.

Officers also briefed the PM about the efforts being made to import medical grade oxygen.