Cabinet approves establishment of International Big Cat Alliance

New Delhi, Feb 29 (UNI) Acknowledging India’s leading role in conserving tigers, other big cats and many of its endangered species, the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday approved the establishment of International Big Cat Alliance (IBCA) with headquarters in India with a one-time budgetary support of Rs.150 crore for a period of five years from 2023-24 to 2027-28.

On the occasion of Global Tiger Day, 2019 the Prime Minister had called for an Alliance of Global Leaders to curb poaching in Asia. He reiterated this on the occasion of Commemorating 50 years of India’s Project Tiger on April 9, 2023 and formally announced launch of an International Big Cat Alliance aiming at securing the future of big cats and landscapes they thrive.

The pioneering and long standing tiger and other big cat conservation good practices evolved in India may-be replicated in many other range countries.

Seven big cats include Tiger, Lion, Leopard, Snow Leopard, Puma, Jaguar and the Cheetah out of these five big cats viz. Tiger, Lion, Leopard, Snow Leopard and Cheetah are found in India.

The IBCA has been conceived as a multi-country, multi-agency coalition of 96 big cat range countries, non-range countries interested in big cat conservation, conservation partners and scientific organizations working in the field of big cat conservation besides business groups and corporates willing to contribute to the cause of big cats.

This is to establish networks and develop synergies in a focused manner so as to bring to a common platform a centralized repository of successful practices and personnel, backed by financial support which can be leveraged to strengthen the conservation agenda in the field to arrest decline in big cat population and reverse the trend.

This will be a demonstrative step in leadership position on big cat agenda, to bring range countries and others on a common platform.

IBCA has secured Government of India’s initial support of Rs. 150 crore for five years (2023-24 to 2027-28). For augmented corpus, contributions from bilateral and multilateral agencies; other appropriate institutions and mobilizing financial support from public sector organizations, national and international financial institutions and donor agencies will further be explored.

The Alliance ensures sustainable use of natural resources and mitigates challenges emanating from climate change. By safeguarding big cats and their habitats, the IBCA contributes to natural climate adaptation, water and food security and well-being of thousands of communities reliant on these ecosystems.

IBCA would instil cooperation among countries for mutual benefit and immensely contribute in furthering long term conservation agenda.

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