Forest tourism needs to be strictly regulated in India: Senior Advocate
It is time that human beings acknowledge that we have never helped nature, we have only destroyed nature, said Senior Advocate Harish Salve during a discussion on the conservation of forests and Project Tiger.
“We Indians are a thoroughly indisciplined race. We need tourism, but it must be strictly regulated. We can have tourism, but not to the extent that it disrupts the food supply for the big cats… We need to establish strict rules on how and where to allow tourism. It worries me that in India, mass tourism could lead to the complete destruction of forests,” added Salve.
At the launch of a coffee table photo book on Project Tiger, Niti Ayog CEO Amitabh Kant, Salve, and senior conservationists and environmentalists discussed the role of laws and people in the conservation and destruction of forests and biodiversity in India.
“Forests are too important to be left to the foresters. It’s important for people to visit forests, but only within their carrying capacity. We cannot afford to turn our forests into picnic areas,” said Kant.
The launch of the photo book drew participation from legal luminaries and environmental experts. Agreeing with Kant’s analysis of tourist behaviour, Senior Advocate Harish Salve emphasized the need to instil a sense of “ownership of forests” among the people.