Downplaying the controversy surrounding proposal to classify peacock and state animal Wild Bison as ‘vermin’, Goa government has said in the Legislative Assembly that only common crow, fruit bats, mice and rats have been declared as nuisance animals.
State Forest Minister Rajendra Arlekar, in a written reply, said as per Wildlife Protection Act-1972, only three animals—common crow, fruit bats, mice and rats—are specified as vermin.
“So far, no other wild animal has been declared as vermin in Goa,” Arlekar said responding to a question raised by independent legislator Vijai Sardessai.
A controversy had erupted last month when agriculture minister Ramesh Tawadkar had proposed that government will declare peacock and wild bison as ‘vermin’ as they cause damage to crops. Locals and activists had expressed fear of mass culling of the national bird.