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   April  27, 2015



Kashmir Markhor lost both eyes in National park of Chitral

By Zahiruddin

An eight-year old male markhor was shifted to Peshawar for treatment which had lost the sight of both eyes and had turned blind for the last one week in the core zone of Chitral Gol National Park.

Divisional forest officer of Chitral Gol Wildlife Division, Muhammad Buzurg confirmed to Chitral Times that the wild animal was sent to the down district on the orders of conservator of wildlife when it did not recover here for the last five days despite being given doses of drug.

He said that this was the first case in which the animal had developed eye related disease and there was a need to diagnose it properly to contain the disease in the park where it can be contracted by the other markhors.

Meanwhile, the sending of the animal to down district for treatment has become a bone of contention between the community and the wildlife department.

Talking to Chitral Times, the chairman of Chitral Gol National Park Association (CGPA) Hussain Ahmed said that the DFO did not take the association into confidence before sending it to Peshawar.

He apprehended that the disease was incurable as per his knowledge and experience and the higher officers of the department will devour its meat while the community was equally share holder in it being its custodian.

Mr. Ahmed said that CGPA was the statutory body of the department representing the community and was the umbrella organization of two village conservation committees and it was mandatory for the DFO to consult him before taking any such decision.

Regarding the rescue of the ailing animal, he said that two community watchers had spotted the animal five days and removed it to the wildlife hut inside the park and reported to the park management.

He alleged that the DFO tried to conceal the matter from the local community for so many days and sent it outside the district with any legal authority.

When a local veterinary doctor was contacted, he said the eye ailment leading to blindness can be either by nutrition or nerves breakdown and in case of the former, it is curable and it was a right step on the part of the department to send it to Peshawar for treatment.


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