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THE WILD LIFE (PROTECTION) ACT, 1972

Title : THE WILD LIFE (PROTECTION) ACT, 1972

Year : 1972



(1) Every-

(a) Wild animal, other than vermin, which is hunted under section 11 or sub-section (1) of section 29 or sub-section (6) of section 35 or kept or bred in captivity or hunted in contravention of any provision of this Act or any rule or order made there under or found dead, or killed by mistake; and

(b) Animal article, trophy or uncured trophy or meat derived from any wild animal referred to in clause (a) in respect of which any offence against this Act or any rule or order made there under has been committed;

(c) ivory imported into India and an article made from such ivory in respect of which any offence against this Act or any rule or order made thereunder has been committed;

(d) Vehicle, vessel, weapon, trap or tool that has been used for committing an offence and has been seized under the provisions of this Act, shall be the property of the State Government, and, where such animal is hunted in a sanctuary or National Park declared by the Central Government, such animal or any animal article, trophy, uncured trophy or meat derived from such animal, or any vehicle, vessel, weapon, trap or tool used in such hunting shall be the property of the Central Government.

(2) Any person who obtains, by any means, the possession of Government property, shall, within forty-eight hours from obtaining such possession, make a report as to the obtaining of such possession to the nearest police station or the authorised officer and shall, if so required, hand over such property to the officer-in-charge of such police station or such authorised officer, as the case may be.

(3) No person shall, without the previous permission in writing of the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer-

(a) Acquire or keep in his possession, custody or control, or

(b) Transfer to any person, whether by way of gift, sale or otherwise, or

(c) Destroy or damage, such Government property.




(1) Every person having at the commencement of this Act the control, custody or possession of any captive animal specified in Schedule I or Part II of Schedule II, or animal article, trophy or uncured trophy derived from such animal or salted or dried skins of such animal or the musk of a musk deer or the horn of a rhinoceros, shall, within thirty days from the commencement of this Act, declare to the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer the number and description of the animal, or article of the foregoing description under his control, custody or possession and the place where such animal or article is kept.

(2) No person shall, after the commencement of this Act, acquire, receive, keep in his control, custody or possession, sell, offer for sale or otherwise transfer or transport any animal specified in Schedule I or Part II of Schedule II or any uncured trophy or meat derived from such animal, or the salted or dried skins of such animal or the musk of a musk deer or the horn of a rhinoceros, except with the previous permission in writing of the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer.

(2A) No person other than a person having a certificate of ownership, shall, after the commencement of the Wild Life (Protection) Amendment Act, 2002 acquire, receive, keep in his control, custody or possession any captive animal, animal article, trophy or uncured trophy specified in Schedule I or Part II of Schedule II, except by way of inheritance.

(2B) Every person inheriting any captive animal, animal article, trophy or uncured trophy under sub-section (2A) shall, within ninety days of such inheritance make a declaration to the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer and the provisions of sections 41 and 42 shall apply as if the declaration had been made under sub-section (1) of section 40:

Provided
that nothing in sub-sections (2A) and (2B) shall apply to the live elephant.

(3) Nothing in sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) shall apply to a recognised zoo subject to the provisions of section 38I or to a public museum.

(4) The State Government may, by notification, require any person to declare to the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer any animal or animal article or trophy (other than a musk of a musk deer or horn of a rhinoceros) or salted or dried skins derived from an animal specified in Schedule I or Part II of Schedule II in his control, custody or possession in such form, in such manner, and within such time, as may be prescribed.

40A. Immunity in certain cases.-

(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-sections (2) and (4) of section 40 of this Act, the Central Government may, by notification, require any person to declare to the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer, any captive animal, animal article, trophy or uncured trophy derived from animals specified in Schedule I or Part II of Schedule II in his control, custody or possession, in respect of which no declaration had been made under sub-section (1) or sub-section (4) of section 40, in such form, in such manner and within such time as may be prescribed.

(2) Any action taken or purported to be taken for violation of section 40 of this Act at any time before the commencement of the Wild Life (Protection) Amendment Act, 2002 shall not be proceeded with and all pending proceedings shall stand abated.

(3) Any captive animal, animal article, trophy or uncured trophy declared under sub-section (1), shall be dealt with in such manner and subject to such conditions as may be prescribed.]

 


(1) On receipt of a declaration made under section 40, the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer may, after such notice, in such manner and at such time, as may be prescribed,-

(a) Enter upon the premises of a person referred to in section 40;

(b) Make inquiries and prepare inventories of animal articles, trophies, uncured trophies, salted and dried skins and captive animals specified in Schedule I and Part II of Schedule II and found thereon; and

(c) Affix upon the animals, animal articles, trophies or uncured trophies identification marks in such manner as may be prescribed.

(2) No person shall obliterate or counterfeit any identification mark referred to in this Chapter.




The Chief Wild Life Warden may, for the purposes of section 40, issue a certificate of ownership in such form, as may be prescribed, to any person who, in his opinion, is in lawful possession of any wild animal or any animal article, trophy, uncured trophy and may, where possible, mark, in the prescribed manner, such animal article, trophy or uncured trophy for purposes of identification:

Provided that before issuing the certificate of ownership in respect of any captive animal, the Chief Wild Life Warden shall ensure that the applicant has adequate facilities for housing, maintenance and upkeep of the animal.



(1) No person having in his possession captive animal, animal article, trophy or uncured trophy in respect of which he has a certificate of ownership shall transfer by way of sale or offer for sale or by any other mode of consideration of commercial nature, such animal or article or trophy or uncured trophy.

(2) Where a person transfers or transports from the State in which he resides to another State or acquires by transfer from outside the State, any such animal, animal article, trophy or uncured trophy in respect of which he has a certificate of ownership, he shall, within thirty days of the transfer or transport, report the transfer or transport to the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer within whose jurisdiction the transfer or transport is effected.

(3) Nothing in this section shall apply-

(a) to tail feather of peacock and the animal article or trophies made therefrom;

(b) to transfer of captive animals between recognised zoos subject to the provisions of section 38-I, and transfer amongst zoos and public museums.



(1) Subject to the provisions of Chapter VA, no person shall, except under, and in accordance with, a licence granted under sub-section (4)]-

(a) Commence or carry on the business as-

(i) A manufacturer of or dealer in, any animal article; or

(ii) A taxidermist; or

(iii) A dealer in trophy or uncured trophy; or

(iv) A dealer in captive animals; or

(v) A dealer in meat; or

(b) Cook or serve meat in any eating-house;

(c) Derive, collect or prepare, or deal in, snake venom:

Provided that nothing in this sub-section shall prevent a person, who immediately before the commencement of this Act was carrying on the business or occupation specified in this sub-section, from carrying on such business or occupation for a period of thirty days from such commencement, or where he has made an application within that period for the grant of a licence to him, until the licence is granted to him or he is informed in writing that a licence cannot be granted to him:

Provided further
that nothing in this sub-section shall apply to the dealers in tail feather of peacock and articles made therefrom and the manufacturers of such articles.

Explanation.—For the purposes of this section, “eating-house” includes a hotel, restaurant or any other place where any eatable is served on payment, whether or not such payment is separately made for such eatable or is included in the amount charged for board and lodging.

(2) Every manufacturer of, or dealer in, animal article, or every dealer in captive animals, trophies or uncured trophies, or every taxidermist shall, within fifteen days from the commencement of this Act, declare to the Chief Wild Life Warden his stocks of animal articles, captive animals, trophies and uncured trophies as the case may be, as on the date of such declaration and the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer may place an identification mark on every animal article, captive animal trophy or uncured trophy as the case may be.

(3) Every person referred to in sub-section (1) who intends to obtain a licence, shall make an application to the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer for the grant of a licence.

(4) (a) Every application referred to in sub-section (3) shall be made in such form and on payment of such fee as may be prescribed to the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer.

(b) No licence referred to in sub-section (1) shall be granted unless the Chief Wild Life Warden, or the authorised officer having regard to antecedents and previous experience of the applicant, the implication which the grant of such licence would have in the status of wildlife to such other matters as may be prescribed in this behalf and after making such inquiry in respect of those matters as he may think fit, is satisfied that the licence should be granted.

(5) Every licence granted under this section shall specify the premises in which and the conditions, if any, subject to which the licensee shall carry on his business.

(6) Every licence granted under this section shall—

(a) Be valid for one year from the date of its grant;

(b) Not be transferable; and

(c) Be renewable for a period not exceeding one year at a time.

(7) No application for the renewal of a licence shall be rejected unless the holder of such licence has been given a reasonable opportunity of presenting his case and unless the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer is satisfied that-

(i) The application for such renewal has been made after the expiry of the period specified therefor, or

(ii) Any statement made by the applicant at the time of the grant of renewal of the licence was incorrect or false in material particulars, or

(iii) The applicant has contravened any term or condition of the licence or any provision of this Act or any rule made there under, or

(iv) The applicant does not fulfil the prescribed conditions.

(8) Every order granting or rejecting an application for the grant or renewal of a licence shall be made in writing.

(9) Nothing in the foregoing sub-sections shall apply in relation to vermin.



Subject to any general or special order of the State Government, the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer may, for reasons to be recorded by him in writing, suspend or cancel any licence granted or renewed under section 44:

Provided that no such suspension or cancellation shall be made except after giving the holder of the licence a reasonable opportunity of being heard.



(1) An appeal from an order refusing to grant or renew a licence under section 44 or an order suspending or cancelling a licence under section 45 shall lie-

(a) If the order is made by the authorised officer, to the Chief Wild Life Warden; or

(b) If the order is made by the Chief Wild Life Warden, to the State Government.

(2) In the case of an order passed in appeal by the Chief Wild Life Warden under clause (a) of sub-section (1), a second appeal shall lie to the State Government.

(3) Subject as aforesaid, every order passed in appeal under this section shall be final.

(4) An appeal under this section shall be preferred within thirty days from the date of communication, to the applicant, of the order appealed against:

Provided that the appellate authority may admit any appeal preferred after the expiry of the period aforesaid if it is satisfied that the appellant had sufficient cause for not preferring the appeal in time.




A licensee under this Chapter shall

(a) Keep records, and submit such returns of his dealings, as may be prescribed,-

(i) To the Director or any other officer authorised by him in this behalf, and

(ii) To the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer; and

(b) Make such records available on demand for inspection by such officers.



No licensee under this Chapter shall-

(a) Keep in his control, custody or possession,-

(i) Any animal, animal articles, trophy or uncured trophy in respect of which a declaration under the provisions of sub-section (2) of section 44 has to be made but has not been made;

(ii) Any animal or animal article, trophy, uncured trophy or meat which has not been lawfully acquired under the provisions of this Act or any rule or order made thereunder;

(b) (i) Capture any wild animal, or

(ii) Acquire, receive, keep in his control, custody or possession, or sell, offer for sale or transport, any captive animal specified in Schedule I or Part II of Schedule II or any animal article, trophy, uncured trophy or meat derived therefrom or serve such meat, or put under a process of taxidermy or make animal article containing part or whole of such animal, except in accordance with such rules as may be made under this Act:

Provided that where the acquisition or, possession, control or custody of such animal or animal article, trophy or uncured trophy, entails the transfer or transport from one State to another, no such transfer or transport shall be effected except with the previous permission in writing of the Director or any other officer authorised by him in this behalf:

Provided further that no such permission under the foregoing proviso shall be granted unless the Director or the officer authorised by him is satisfied that the animal or article aforesaid has been lawfully acquired.

48A. Restriction on transportation of wild life.-

No person shall accept any wild animal (other than vermin), or any animal article, or any specified plant or part or derivative thereof, for transportation except after exercising due care to ascertain that permission from the Chief Wild Life Warden or any other officer authorised by the State Government in this behalf has been obtained for such transportation.



No person shall purchase, receive or acquire any captive animal, wild animal, other than vermin, or any animal article, trophy, uncured trophy or meat derived therefrom otherwise than from a dealer or from a person authorised to sell or otherwise transfer the same under this Act:

Provided that nothing in this section shall apply to a recognised zoo subject to the provisions of section 38-I or to public museum.
 
49A. Definitions.-

In this Chapter,-

(a) “Scheduled animal” means an animal specified for the time being in Schedule I or Part II of Schedule II;

(b) “Scheduled animal article” means an article made from any scheduled animal and includes an article or object in which the whole or any part of such animal has been used but does not include tail feather of peacock, an article or trophy made therefrom and snake venom or its derivative;

(c) “Specified date” means-

(i) In relation to a scheduled animal on the commencement of the Wild Life (Protection) (Amendment) Act, 1986, the date of expiry of two months from such commencement;

(ii) In relation to any animal added or transferred to Schedule I or Part II of Schedule II at any time after such commencement, the date of expiry of two months from such addition or transfer;

(iii) in relation to ivory imported into India or an article made from such ivory, the date of expiry of six months from the commencement of the Wild Life (Protection) (Amendment) Act, 1991.


49B. Prohibition of dealings in trophies, animal articles, etc., derived from scheduled animals.-

(1) Subject to the other provisions of this section, on and after the specified date, no person shall,-

(a) Commence or carry on the business as-

(i) A manufacturer of, or dealer in scheduled animal articles; or

(ia) a dealer in ivory imported into India or articles made therefrom or a manufacturer of such articles; or

(ii) A taxidermist with respect to any scheduled animals or any parts of such animals; or

(iii) A dealer in trophy or uncured trophy derived from any scheduled animal; or

(iv) A dealer in any captive animals being scheduled animals; or

(v) A dealer in meat derived from any scheduled animal; or

(b) Cook or serve meat derived from any scheduled animal in any eating-house.

Explanation
.-For the purposes of this sub-section, “eating-house” has the same meaning as the Explanation below sub-section (1) of section 44.

(2) Subject to the other provisions of this section, no licence granted or renewed under section 44 before the specified date shall entitle the holder thereof or any other person to commence or carry on the business referred to in clause (a) of sub-section (1) of this section or the occupation referred to in clause (b) of that sub-section after such date.

(3) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) where the Central Government is satisfied that it is necessary or expedient so to do in the public interest, it may, by general or special order published in the Official Gazette, exempt, for purposes of export, any corporation owned or controlled by the Central Government (including a Government company within the meaning of section 617 of the Companies Act, 1956 (1 of 1956)) or any society registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 (21 of 1860) or any other law for the time being in force, wholly or substantially financed by the Central Government from the provisions of sub-sections (1) and (2).

(4) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1) or sub-section (2), but subject to any rules which may be made in this behalf, a person holding a licence under section 44 to carry on the business as a taxidermist may put under a process of taxidermy any scheduled animal or any part thereof,-

(a) For or on behalf of the Government or any corporation or society exempted under sub-section (3), or

(b) With the previous authorisation in writing of the Chief Wild Life Warden, for and on behalf of any person for educational or scientific purposes.

49C. Declaration by dealers.-

(1) Every person carrying on the business or occupation referred to in sub-section (1) of section 49B shall, within thirty days from the specified date, declare to the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer,-

(a) His stocks, if any, as at the end of the specified date of-

(i) Scheduled animal articles;

(ii) Scheduled animals and parts thereof;

(iii) Trophies and uncured trophies derived from scheduled animals;

(iv) Captive animals, being scheduled animals;

(v) Ivory imported into India or articles made therefrom;

(b) The place or places at which the stocks mentioned in the declaration are kept; and

(c) The description of such items, if any, of the stocks mentioned in the declaration which he desires to retain with himself for his bona fide personal use.

(2) On receipt of a declaration under sub-section (1), the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer may take all or any of the measures specified in section 41 and for this purpose, the provisions of section 41 shall, so far as may be, apply.

(3) Where, in a declaration made under sub-section (1), the person making the declaration expresses his desire to retain with himself any of the items of the stocks specified in the declaration for his bona fide use, the Chief Wild Life Warden, with the prior approval of the Director, may, if he is satisfied that the person is in lawful possession of such items, issue certificates of ownership in favour of such person with respect to all, or as the case may be, such of the items as in the opinion of the Chief Wild Life Warden, are required for the bona fide personal use of such person and affix upon such items identification marks in such manner as may be prescribed:

Provided that no such item shall be kept in any commercial premises.

(4) No person shall obliterate or counterfeit any identification mark referred to in sub-section (3).

(5) An appeal shall lie against any refusal to grant certificate of ownership under sub-section (3) and the provisions of sub-sections (2), (3) and (4) of section 46 shall, so far as may be, apply in relation to appeals under this sub-section.

(6) Where a person who has been issued a certificate of ownership under sub-section (3) in respect of any item,-

(a) Transfers such item of any person, whether by way of gift, sale or otherwise, or

(b) Transfers or transports from the State in which he resides to another State any such item, he shall, within thirty days of such transfer or transport, report the transfer or transport to the Chief Wild Life Warden or the authorised officer within whose jurisdiction the transfer or transport is effected.

(7) No person, other than a person who has been issued a certificate of ownership under sub-section (3) shall, on and after the specified date, keep under his control, sell or offer for sale or transfer to any person any scheduled animal, or a scheduled animal article or ivory imported into India or any article made therefrom.





Last updated on April, 2016

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