Himanta Biswa Sarma, the chief minister of Assam, has refuted claims made by two activists that he, Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, and Tourism Minister Jayanta Malla Baruah breached the law by going on a night safari in Kaziranga National Park.
According to two activists in Assam, Sadhguru, Mr. Sarma, and Mr. Baruah entered the national park on Saturday well after the scheduled visit time, which is where the Indian one-horned rhino lives.
The activists said that in order to conserve the animals and preserve their natural environment, the Wildlife Protection Act of 1972 prohibits safari tours inside national parks after a designated hour.
Videos posted to social media and broadcast on local channels show Mr. Sarma, Mr. Baruah, and Sadhguru driving an open safari SUV.
No violation exists. The warden may provide authorization to access a protected area, even at night, in accordance with the wildlife law. Nobody is prohibited from entering at night by law. Since Sadhguru and Sri Sri Ravi Shankar visited and have thousands of followers, we anticipate a very successful tourist season for Kaziranga this time, Mr. Sarma told reporters after the park’s official opening yesterday.
According to MK Yadava, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests for Assam, the Chief Minister and Sadhguru were invited by the forest department. It is therefore incorrect to state that Sadhguru and our Chief Minister entered the park and took a safari in the middle of the night.
There was no way we could change the plan simply because it was getting dark because all the arrangements had already been made, he said.
Action should be taken against them in accordance with the Wildlife Protection Act, according to activists Soneswar Narah and Prabin Pegu, who made the complaint to the Golaghat district police.
No first information report, or FIR, has been filed, according to a police officer, but they have begun their initial inquiry.
“We complained that Sadhguru, Jayanta Malla Baruah, and Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma had violated Kaziranga National Park’s Wildlife Protection Act of 1972. According to Soneswar Narah, head adviser for Jeepal Krishak Shramik Sangha, safari is not permitted inside Kaziranga National Park after 4 o’clock in the afternoon.
“The Wildlife Protection Act was broken when the three were spotted entering the national park after 6 o’clock enjoying a safari ride. We have been residing in the Kaziranga National Park’s periphery for many years and have made several sacrifices for the park. The forest service slaughtered a large number of our people and labelled them as poachers “Narah asserted.
“Law applies to everyone equally. How could they blatantly disregard the Wildlife Protection Act? Such behaviour would not be tolerated by us. They ought to be detained for breaking the law, “added said.
For driving inside the national park after hours, Sadhguru, Mr. Sarma, and Mr. Baruah received criticism on social media.