Highlights of 39th Meeting of the Central Zoo Authority

39th meeting of the Central Zoo Authority

The 39th Meeting of the Central Zoo Authority was held today under the chairmanship of the Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri Bhupender Yadav at National Zoological Park, New Delhi.

Officials of the MoEF&CC including, Ms Leena Nandan, Secretary; Shri Chandra Prakash Goyal, Director General Forest & Special Secretary; Dr S. P. Yadav, Director, Wildlife Institute of India; Shri Bivash Ranjan, Additional Director General (Wild Life); Shri Pravir Pandey, Additional Secretary & Financial Advisor; Representatives of Indian Veterinary Research Institute and School of Planning and Architecture and other members attended the meeting.

Highlights of the meeting included the  release of two publications -National Studbook for Snow Leopard and the CZA quarterly newsletter, Ex-situ Updates.

The Members were apprised of the following activities undertaken during the financial year 2021-22 by the CZA. 18 zoos were evaluated, 10 masterplans for zoos were approved.  
69 national and 10 international acquisition/transfer of animals was taken up for the purposes of conservation breeding and conservation education in Indian zoos. The Management Effectiveness Evaluation (MEE-ZOO) of zoos (first time in the world) has been undertaken in 39 recognized zoos (Large and Medium zoos).  

The zoos across the country are taking active part in the celebration of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav event launched by Hon’ble Prime Minister of India on 12th March 2021. The program has, till date, covered 72 zoos highlighting 72 species  over 72 weeks with daily activities showcasing the rich biodiversity of our country through the concept – Conservation to co-existence: The people connect.  

Research collaborations between CZA and scientific institutions including the proposed National Referral Center-Wildlife Bio- banking initiatives for endangered species is among the activities proposed to be taken up.

Zoo Management Information System (Zoo-MIS), a web application developed to simplify statutory reporting and proposal submissions to CZA.  

Initiatives taken to align the activities taken up by the zoos with the Vision Plan 2021-31 in order to ensure transformation of Indian zoos to become a greater force for conservation with cutting edge research, and immersive visitor experiences that strike meaningful chords with people of all ages.  

Ongoing conservation breeding programs and successful breeding of species such as; Red Panda, Gaur, Snow Leopard including efforts to release captive bred individuals in the wild viz. Indian Chevrotain, Red Panda, Western Tragopan.  

During  the meeting, the recommendations of the Technical Committee and Administrative Committee were reviewed and approved. Other deliberations included the Annual report (2021-22) of the Central Zoo Authority and the proposals for Acquisition/ Transfer of animals between Indian Zoo.

The proposal to identify Ambassadors for Indian Zoos comprising of eminent personalities was also discussed. This was with an intention to garner support for the conservation initiatives taken up by the zoos and also promote multi-sectoral national and international co-operation in this sector.

Dr. Sanjay Kumar Shukla, Member Secretary, CZA apprised the Chairperson CZA of the activities planned by the CZA .

Central Zoo Authority (CZA), is a statutory body under the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India http://cza.nic.in/. It was established in 1992 through an amendment to the Indian Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 to oversee the functioning of Indian zoos and complement wildlife conservation strategies through ex-situ measures.

The guiding objective of CZA has been to ensure best practices for housing, upkeep and healthcare of captive animals in Indian zoos. As on today, CZA recognizes 147 zoos. Zoos carry out a multitude of activities ranging from conservation awareness, display of rare fauna, rescue and rehabilitation and conservation breeding programs for threatened species. With close to 80 million annual visitors, zoos serve as learning centers for wildlife conservation and awareness.