Supreme Court Dismissed a Request to Import African Elephants
On Monday, the Supreme Court rejected a plea asking for approval to bring African elephants into Pakistan for a zoological garden.
During the hearing, Raja Shafqat Abbasi, the deputy attorney general (DAG), briefly mentioned a CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) Management Authority meeting scheduled for July 2020. The group came to the conclusion that the Peshawar Zoo is not a place where wild African elephants can survive.
In September 2020, the Peshawar High Court first dismissed the case. The Supreme Court heard an appeal from a group that disagreed with the judgement. The petitioner, who was represented by attorney Niaz Wali Khan, said that they were in charge of feeding and caring for two elephants that they had previously purchased from Zimbabwe. However, the request to import elephants was turned down.
The DAG stated that after the initial round of proceedings under Section 15 of the Pakistan Trade Control of Wild Fauna and Flora Act 2012, the PHC had already requested the Ministry of Climate Change to call a meeting of the Pakistani CITES Management Authority.
The purpose of the conference was to assess the Peshawar Zoo’s capacity to house and care for elephants. The mandate required a meeting to be held in July 2020, and it was decided then that the zoo could not supply the necessary environment.
However, in accordance with the current petition, officials from the Zimbabwe Part Wildlife Department visited the Peshawar Zoo, thoroughly assessed the area, and came to the conclusion that it was acceptable and advantageous for elephants.