DAWARIAN: Years of hostilities and an electrical fence alongside a de facto border between nuclear-armed neighbours India and Pakistan have taken a toll not simply on people. Wildlife has additionally been badly bothered in one of many world’s most militarised areas.
The newest victims of the decades-old battle are two orphaned Asiatic bear cubs discovered on the Pakistan aspect of the Himalayan area of Kashmir.
Sharda and Narda have been found final 12 months by villagers at an altitude of 14,000 toes (4,270 m), alone, and unable to open their eyes, mentioned Muhammad Ashraf, an official with the wildlife and fisheries division in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).
“Our guards and volunteers reconnoitred the area for about two months but did not find any trace of the she-bear on our side of the divide,” Ashraf mentioned.
The mom bear could have been killed on the Indian aspect of the border by a landmine or a shell, he mentioned, together with her cubs crawling throughout to be noticed by the villagers.
The duo was nursed with bottled milk for 2 months, then raised on fruit and veggies and steadily launched to different meals together with wheat and maize.
Now they maintain busy climbing mulberry and walnut timber on the compound the place they’re saved, or typically onto a tin-roof shelter that homes a hatchery for rainbow trout, drawing a each day viewers of each kids and adults.
A picturesque warfare zone
This compound is simply outdoors the village of Dawarian, some 66 miles (106 km) northeast of Muzaffarabad, the capital of AJK. The world’s fast-flowing rivers and streams, waterfalls, glacial lakes and forests make it in style with vacationers.
Since 2004 there was a 12-foot excessive fence slicing via the world to mark the border. India constructed the fence and says it’s meant to maintain militants from crossing.
Nevertheless it has additionally made it practically inconceivable for wildlife to maneuver freely of their pure habitat.
“The bear cubs are only one instance,” said Sardar Javaid Ayub, head of the wildlife and fisheries department on the Pakistan side.
“They have been born throughout the divide and when their mother received killed near the fence they crossed over via some burrow or eroded portion of land (beneath the fence).”
Ashraf recollects that a number of years again division employees noticed a lifeless black bear in a ravine removed from the fence.
One leg had apparently been blown off by a landmine and it had fallen into the ravine and died.
“This is what … would be happening with many wild animals but we rarely come to know about it,” Ashraf mentioned.