National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA)
The Centrally Sponsored Scheme “Project Tiger” was launched in April, 1973 with the objective “to ensure maintenance of a viable population of Tigers in India for scientific, economic, aesthetic, cultural and ecological values, and to preserve for all times, areas of biological importance as a national heritage for the benefit, education and enjoyment of the people.”
The Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972 was amended keeping in view the needs of the Project Tiger for providing enabling provisions for constitution of the National Tiger Conservation Authority and the Tiger and Other Endangered Species Crime Control Bureau.
So, the National Tiger Conservation Authority was constituted from September 4, 2006 to strengthen tiger conservation. The functions are as follows:
- Ensuring normative standards in tiger reserve management
- Preparation of reserve specific tiger conservation plan
- Laying down annual/ audit report before Parliament
- Instituting State level Steering Committees under the Chairmanship of Chief Minister and establishment of Tiger Conservation Foundation.
- According approval for declaring new Tiger Reserves.
The NTCA has constituted a multidisciplinary Tiger and Other Endangered Species Crime Control Bureau (Wildlife Crime Control Bureau) with effect from 6.6.2007. The WCCB comprises the officers from Police, Forest, Customs and other enforcement agencies to effectively control illegal trade in wildlife.
Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF)
The announcement for creation of Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF) was announced by the Finance Minister in Budget speech of 2008. A onetime grant of Rs. 50 Crore was provided to the National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) for raising, arming and deploying a Special Tiger Protection Force for 13 tiger reserves. The rest of the reserves were taken up later,