Saving the species

  • 30/07/1995

After working on the Water Wars series of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and winning the Young travel Writer Award from The Observer, Pratap Rughani has just finished shooting another documentary for BBC. This time he focuses an the wildlife conservation programmes in Africa. Entitled African Game, the film captures the 100 years of wildlife conservation in Africa. Rughani traces the conservation methods followed during the British colonial period and says, "The Africans, unlike Westerners have a very pragmatic and non- romantic view of their environment and its conservation. Which is why they were the first ones to propagate harvesting of wild species. They realised that unless the local had an economic stake in conservation. no policy will be successful.'

In fact, white researching for the fill he found that many of the wildlife parks were reserved by the Britishers because the popularity of hunting had resulted in less availability of good game. And gradually these areas were used to propagate wild game which could then be hunted. Now the same areas are being designated as nature reserves. In the last few years. even the Europeans and the Americans have realised the practicality of the African way of coo. servation and organisations such as thp World Wide Fund for Nature have change all their positions accordingly.

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