Wildlife Wardens
Wildlife Wardens

Wildlife Wardens

Guidelines for appointment of honorary Wildlife Wardens

The Need

People’s participation and support is crucial for nature and Wild Life conservation, One of the important ways of enlisting such support is by involving the community leaders and other persons of standing, who have the interest as well as the capacity to render assistance for this cause. Such assistance can be very useful in control over poaching for this clandestine trade in wild animals or their articles, identification of relatively less known wild life refuges needing protection, carrying the message of conservation to the people living in and around the sanctuaries and national parks, and related matters. This objective can be accomplished if really suitable public men are identified and appointed Honorary Wild Life Wardens, with their duties, responsibilities, and powers clearly defined.

Legal Status

Section 4 of the Wild Life (Protection) Act. 1972 empowers the State Government to appoint

  • A Chief Wild Life Warden
  • Wild Life Wardens; and
  • Such other officers and employees as may be necessary for the purposes of the Act.

Honorary Wild Life Wardens can be appointed under sub-section (bb) of section 4 of the Act. Under section 59 of the aforesaid Act, such Honorary Wild Life Wardens shall be deemed to be public servants within the meaning of section 21 of Indian Penal Code.

Criteria for Selection

  • It is very important that the right persons are selected for appointment as Honorary Wild Life Wardens. Every State has a chief Wild Life Warden and it is mainly his duty to recommend the names of suitable person for this purpose. However, in order to assist him in this regard as well as to introduce a measure of wider participation, the members of the State Wild Life Advisory Board should be requested to suggest suitable names, especially from their own areas.
  • The following criteria is kept in mind while assessing the suitability of a person as an Honorary Wild Life Warden: (a) Genuine concern for Wild Life conservation. (b) Personal record free of involvement in any activity detrimental to the interests of nature and Wild Life Conservation. Any person involved in commercial exploitation of Wild Life should not be considered. (c) Capacity to render help to the official machinery. (d) Local standing which make him/her effective especially in conveying the conservation message.
  • An important point to bear in mind is the identification of areas particularly prone to poaching, e.g. forests in the vicinity of urban centres and cantonments or close to sanctuaries and national parks. Likewise, centres of clandestine trade in Wild Life and products thereof are identified; so heavy. Selection of persons as Honorary Wild Life Wardens must be related to such problem areas because it is these areas which need priority attention and where public participation is needed most.

Procedure for Appointment

  • Under section 6 of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972, every State and Union Territory has a Wild Life Advisory Board to aid and advise the Government in matters collected with the protection of wild life. The appointment of an Honorary Wild Life Warden is generally with the recommendation of this Advisory Board. The Chief Wild Life Warden submits the proposals for this purpose at the meeting(s) of the Board and then seek the orders of the Government.
  • While recommending any person for such appointment, the criteria laid down in paras 4 and 5 above is kept in mind by the Board.
  • The appointment of an Honorary Wild Life Warden should, in the first instance, be generally for a period of one year. Thereafter on the recommendation of the Wild Life Advisory Board, it may be renewed for a period not exceeding 2-3 years at a time.
  • The Wild Life Advisory Board of each State/Union Territory should review the functioning of the scheme of Honorary Wild Life Wardens at least once every year.
  • The appointment order of an Honorary Wild Life Warden should clearly specify the jurisdiction, which should normally be a district or a few districts, in the area where the person resides. However, there is no objection to making members of the State Wild Life Advisory Board Honorary Wardens for larger areas =.
  • Each Honorary Warden should be issued an identity card having his signature and photograph duly attested by the Chief Wild Life Warden. The Chief Wild Life Warden should also give each Honorary Warden a small booklet containing the Wild Life (Protection) Act and the Rules made thereunder as well as the duties, responsibilities, and power of an Honorary Wild Life Warden.
  • The State Government may, at its discretion, terminate the appointment of an Honorary Wild Life Warden at any time. without assigning reasons.

Duties and Responsibilities

The main duty and responsibility of an Honorary Wild Life Warden is to assist whole heartedly the State organization responsible for wildlife conservation work, especially with regard to the following matters.

  • Control of poaching and clandestine trade in wild animals and products / articles thereof
  • Detection and selection of offences under the Wild Life (Protection) Act and the Rules made thereunder.
  • Preventing damage to the habitat of Wild life.
  • Identification and selection of areas suitable to be declared as sanctuaries, national parks, closed areas, etc; as well as measures for their proper protection.
  • Measures for dealing with the problem of damage by wild animals to life and property, including the assessment and payment of compensation, etc.
  • Carrying the message of conservation to the people and enlisting public support for nature and wild life conservation. The effort should be specially directed towards the communities living in or near the declared wild life reserve.
  • Any other matter connected with the protection of Wild Life, which may be entrusted by the Wild Life Advisory Board or the Chief Wild Life Warden of the State, from time to time.

Chief Wildlife Warden

Section of the
Powers of Chief Wildlife Warden Design of official to whom the powers are Delegated.
1. 10(2) Reporting of Wild animals specified in Schedule II and III, wounded, killed or captured by license holder. License issuing authority and Dy. C.F. concerned.
2. 10(3) Surrender of License and records of wild animals killed or captured by licensees. License issuing authority.
3. 11(1)(b) Hunting of wild animals to be permitted in certain. C.Fs. and Dy. C.Fs. within their respective Jurisdiction.
4. (13) Suspension or cancellation of licenses. Licenses issuing authority.
5. 27(1)(b) Restriction on entry in Sanctuary. C.F.Wl., Junagadh and Sanctuary Suptt.Concerned.
6. 22(2)(6) Taking charge of dead wild animals. Sanctuary Suptt. concerned.
7. 31 Granting permission to enter the sanctuary with weapon. C.F.WL., Junagadh and Sanctuary Suptt.concerned.
8. 56(2) Issue of license for hunting wild animals in game reserves. C.F.concerned within their repectives jurdistion.
9. 39(2) Taking over possession of any wild animal article, trophy or uncured trophy there of Captured or hunted in contravention of the act or found dead. All R.F.O.s Assitt Cfs and Dy.CFS within their respective's Their respective jurdisctions, Tech. Assistant to C.C.F.
10. 39(3) Grant of permission to acquire, keep in possession, custody or control transfer by way of gift or sale, destroy or damage wild animals etc. C.F.WL.,junagadh and C.Fs. and Dy. C.Fs. within their respective jurisdiction Assistant to the C.C.F.G.S. (General Administration and wildlife)
11. 40(1)(2)

and (4)
Receiving declarations of the custody or
possession of captive animals. animal article, uncured trophy salted or dried skin etc. derived from an animals specified in schedule I or Part 2 of schedule II.
C.F. WL., Junagadh and C.Fs. and Dy.C.Fs. within their respective jurisdiction Assistant to the C.CF.G.S. (General Administration and wildlife.)
12. 41(1)(a)
(b )(c)
Powers of inquiry and preparation of inventories and affixing identification marks on animal sarticles trophies etc. All forest officers of the rank of R.F.G. Asstt. And
Dy. C.Fs. within their respective Tech. Asstt. To C.Fs.
13. 43(1) to (6) Powers for issue of permission to sell, transfer and issue of certificate of ownership after inquiry. C.F.WL., Junagadh and C.Fs. and Dy.C.Fs. within their respective jurisdiction Assistant to the C.C.F.G.S. (General Administration and wildlife)
14. 44(1) to
Issue of licenses listed under sub section (1)(a) (b) receiving declaration of stock and placing of identification marks as per sub-section (2) Territorial C.Fs. within their respective jurisdiction.
15. 45 Suspension or Cancellation of License issued under sec. 44 Territorial C.Fs. within their respective jurisdictions.
16. 47(a) Controlling maintenance of records and returns. License issuing authority.
17 47(b) Inspection of record. All Forest officers of the rank of R.F.O. and above Tech. Asstt. To C.C.F., Honorary Wild Life Wardens in their respective jurisdictions.
18 50(I)(a)
Powers of inspection, entry, search
and seizure and arrest without warrant.
All Forest officers of the rank of R.F.O. and above Tech. Asstt. To C.C.F., Honorary Wildlife Wardens in their respective districts.
19 50(6) Sale of article seized A.C.Fs. and Dy.C.Fs. with their respective jurisdictions.
20 55 Lodging of complaints of wild life offences in the courts All Forest officers of the ranks of R.F.O. Asstt. And Dy.C.Fs. in their respective jurisdiction. Tech Asstt. To C.C.F. Legal Supdt. to C.C.F.

Note: All Forest officers of the ranks of Range Forest Officers and Assistant and Dy. Conservators of Forest shall be deemed to be wild life wardens as per section - 4 (I) (b) of the Act. For the purpose of implementing the provisions of the Act.

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