On the eve of his retirement on June 29, director general of forests M K Sharma announced that the Union ministry of environment and forests (MoEF) was going to let private parties breed and harvest wild animals -- the musk deer to begin with. As expected, hardcore conservationists tore down the proposal because it dared to adopt a rational approach. The issue was given a summary burial by the MoEF itself later. "Right now there is no such plan. The Union ministry of health and family welfare is carrying out experiments on musk extraction. However, the current laws do not permit commercial breeding," the MoEF stated. Sadly, the debate to rescue India's wildlife from the clutches of the conservation orthodoxy refuses to gather steam.
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