DESPITE SUFFERING significant revenue losses, the Gujarat State Lion Conservation Society (GSLCS) has increased salaries of wildlife trackers by an average 10 per cent.
“Normally, we increase salaries of wildlife trackers by average 10 per cent every year. In keeping with this, we have decided to do the same this year also,” Dushyant Vasavada, chief conservator of forests (CCF) of Junagadh wildlife circle, told The Indian Express on Sunday.
The CCF is the member secretary of GSLCS. The increase would result in monthly salary of a lion tracker going up by average Rs 1,000. The move comes days after the GSLCS undertook the process of renewing the annual service contracts of 160 trackers and also clearing their dues for April and May. The state forest department had formed the GSLCS in 2007 to aid lion conservation efforts in Gujarat.
Vasavada said the Society’s revenue have been affected due the suspension of tourism activities following lockdown which began in late March this year after the outbreak of Covid-19. “On an average, tourism generates revenue of around Rs 90 lakh per month. But due the suspension of tourism activities, we have lost significant revenue,” the officer said.
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