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Kerala Kaumudi Online
Sunday, 05 February 2023 10.02 AM IST

When honey bee and wasp gets wildlife status

honey-bees

It is welcome that the state government decided to give Rs.10 lakhs to the families of those who get killed by the sting of honey bees and wasps. Till now such compensation was not there. Human lives are lost occasionally due to the sting of the seemingly harmless honey bees. Wasps are more aggressive than honey bees. Another fact is that these creatures attack only when they are harmed.

The decision to give compensation to victims of honey bees’ and wasps’ attacks comes after these creatures are given the status of wildlife. There is already a stipulation that compensation of Rs.10 lakhs must be given to victims’ families in wildlife attacks. However, the main problem is that all these did not have a centralized guideline.

A person is entitled to maximum compensation of Rs.1 lakh if injured in the attack by honeybees and wasps. Not only in forests but if the attack occurs outside the forest, the victim is entitled to compensation. Many people have been attacked by wasps but not even the cost of medical treatment is given as compensation. After the government’s decision, this state of affairs will change.

The state is responsible to provide help when a citizen is facing danger from wildlife or a domesticated animal. The attack by a wild animal in the forest or in a village or town, the result is the same. A family becomes orphaned if a death occurs due to wildlife attacks. It is common to deny compensation by raising technicalities.

If a person is killed by a snake bite in the forest, there is a stipulation for Rs.10 lakhs compensation. However, if the attack happens in a rural or urban area, the compensation will be only Rs.2 lakhs. The same kind of discrimination is seen in cases of deaths brought about by attacks from other wildlife animals. There must be a demand to have a fixed standard to view every death as the same.

Rs.5 lakhs compensation is the same for a person, who dies in the sea after his boat capsizes and for a person who dies after falling from a tree.

Meanwhile, there is no fixed standard for compensation in road accidents. Sometimes the families are given huge amounts. And at other times the amount will be less.

Recently, hundreds got injured in attacks by dogs. Some sustained grave injuries. The government only tried to capture these dogs and give them vaccination, but no help was given to those who got injured.

The Justice Siri Jagan Committee suggested that there must be compensation for anyone who is bitten. However, no one has tried to get compensation. The main reason is the lack of knowledge of the law. It is hard to get compensation, as stipulated by the law, even if attacked and killed by wildlife.

The complexities in the government procedures and the inherent delay will lengthen the time to get compensation. If the authorities take a more lenient approach, the delay can be reduced. Together with that, there must be centralized laws and guidelines for providing compensation in any type of disaster.

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TAGS: HONEY BEE, WASP, WILDLIFE, STATUS, DOGS, GOVERNMENT, COMPENSATION, DEATHS, JUSTICE SIRI JAGAN COMMITTEE, ATTACKS, FOREST, SNAKE, ROAD ACCIDENT, INJURIES, VACCINATION
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