The Greater One-horned Rhinoceros is perhaps the most enduring emblem of Nepal's rich biological heritage. Rhinos are precious gift of nature not only for us but also for our future generation. Not only is it important to conservationists for its ecological value but it also holds a universal value. The Greater One-horned Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis) is classified by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species as "endangered,”.
Out of five species of rhinoceros in the world, one-horned rhinoceros is found only in Nepal and India. In Nepal, Chitwan National Park (CNP) and its surroundings, Bardiya National Park (BNP) and Suklaphanta Wildlife Reserve (SWR) are the main habitats of the rhinoceros. Kajiranga National Park in India houses the largest number of one-horned rhinoceros. Chitwan National Park was established in 1973 with the objective of protecting one-horned rhinoceros and its habitat. Chitwan National Park (CNP) was recognized as a World Heritage Site in 1984 for its high biodiversity and for maintaining ecological process ecosystems of international significance (DNPWC 2001).
In Nepal, the rhinoceros population was estimated at 1000 individuals until 1950 in the Chitwan National Park. In 2008, rhino population size is estimated at 403 individuals in three Terai protected areas of Nepal. So, the number of one horned Rhino is decreasing dramatically putting this species at high risk of extinction. In recent years, rhino poaching has been one of the major threats for the survival of this species (Rhinoceros unicornis) despite great efforts to curb wildlife poaching and trade in Nepal.. Despite the presence of 840 security personnel in 47 security posts, dozens of field staff and about 37 villages inside the buffer zone areas of CNP, the rhinos are being killed. During the period of two months (May-June 2010), 7 Rhinos have been killed by poachers. A total of 28 endangered one-horned rhinos have been killed inside the CNP in the last 11 months of the year 2009/2010.
The main factor behind this is-the existing national policy is not strict enough or wildlife friendly, creating an easy environment for wildlife criminals to escape prosecution since they are getting protection from corrupt political bodies. The government of Nepal has just shown commitment to the conservation of its rich biodiversity and the survival of flagship species like Greater One-horned Rhinoceros for over four decades. But the there has been no significant changes in the control of poaching; in fact the conditions have been worsening everyday leading the species towards the brink of extinction in Nepal. In this regard, TNW Nepal has taken an initiative to organize an event titled "Rhino Cup Football Match 2010" on the eve of UN International Year of Biodiversity (2010). There will be football match between the Rhino Conservationists and the Young Politicians and Law makers.
1. To raise public awareness on the importance of rhino and of the underlying threats to this species
2. To sensitize the political and governmental structure for effective plans, policies, programs and actions for the conservation of Rhino
3. To exert pressure on the political structure for Rhino conservation through young politicians
4. To energize the concerned stakeholders to start dialogue and take steps for the conservation of rhino in the post-2010 period
1.Different college/schools visit for Rhino Talk and information about the football match
2. Posters and Pamphlets
3. Press conference
4. Promotion through social networking
4. Football Match between Rhino Conservationists and Young Politicians
1. It will create the mass awareness about the Rhino conservation.
2.Different political student leaders will pressurize to their concerned political party for the Rhino conservation and ultimately to the government.
3. It will bring different political party to same floor for common cause and bring mutual understanding between them
4. The event will get a huge media publicity so that the message will spread widely at national level
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