Dhorpatan awaits decision on buffer zone status

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Baglung – After six years of tireless efforts, the government is yet to declare Dhorpatan Hunting Reserve a buffer zone. 

The announcement could not go ahead three years ago even after reaching the final stage following protest from the local residents. The process which moved forward after an all-party consensus stalled in mid way. 

The reserve had sent an extensive study report with border survey one and a half years ago to the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation. "It has been a long time since we sent our proposal, but there has not been any decision from the upper rung," Reserve's Chief Conservation Officer Ananath Baral said. 

Baral added that the reserve has sent a scientific proposal in comparison to the earlier one. "After research we have held an extensive border survey as well," he shared, adding "We are waiting for the department and ministry's decision." 

The reserve has been pushing repeatedly for declaring it a buffer zone from the local to the central level. It plans to integrate ten village development committees from Baglung, Myagdi and Rukum within its buffer zone.

There are a total of 47 human settlements within the proposed buffer zone. Baral added that they had proposed to merge an area spread over 750 sq km within the buffer zone. The reserve claims that all standards have been met for declaration of the buffer zone. Of the 14 parks and reserves across the country, Dhorpatan is the only reserve yet to be declared a buffer zone. 
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National News Agency, Nepal

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