Wildlife: Rescue vs. Capture – Blurred Lines and Better Solutions

GS-3 Mains ( Environment Conservation)

Short Notes or Revision Notes


Question : Evaluate the challenges associated with distinguishing between wildlife rescue and capture in India, particularly in cases of human-wildlife conflict. How can authorities ensure that interventions prioritize the well-being of both animals and humans?

Wildlife Rescue: The Ideal

  • Wildlife rescue implies saving an animal from danger or difficulty.
  • Examples: Leopards in wells, elephants stuck in tanks, snakes trapped indoors, separated elephant calves.

Capture vs. Rescue: The Challenge

  • Increased human-wildlife interaction in India.
  • Reactive capture and relocation are often unsustainable or fatal for animals.
  • Distinguishing true rescue from capture can be difficult.
  • Complex operations (chemical immobilization, expert teams) are needed for large animals in conflict.

The Misguided Rescue of Snakes

  • Most frequent wildlife interaction is with snakes.
  • Poor handling, unnecessary removal, and social media exploitation occur under the guise of “rescue.”
  • Relocation has extremely low success rates for snakes.
  • Relocation creates a “vacuum” for other snakes, increasing conflict.
  • “Rescue” methods can injure and stress snakes, reducing survival post-release.

Rescue as Framing the Conflict

  • “Rescue” implies one species (human or animal) is under threat from the other.
  • This creates a villain (human or animal) and hinders conservation efforts.
  • We need to see human and wildlife coexisting in a “community.”

Solutions for Human-Wildlife Conflict

  • Realistic assessment: Identify the problem, minimize stress factors, explore proactive options.
  • Prioritize proactive mitigation strategies: Early warning systems, monitoring, fencing, education, waste management.
  • Ethical interventions considering both animal and human well-being.
  • Karnataka Forest Department’s promising approaches: Public education, improved waste management, conflict reduction strategies.

The Goal: A Win-Win

  • Relocation disrupts ecosystems (both source and destination).
  • We need solutions that benefit both humans and wildlife.



Data for Better Education: A Brighter Future for Students

GS-2 Mains ( Education)

Short Notes or Revision Notes

Question : Critically analyze the gender disparities revealed in the ASER 2023 report, particularly in terms of STEM education and digital literacy. What are the underlying factors contributing to these disparities, and what measures can be taken to address them effectively?

Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2023

  • Conducted annually since 2005 to understand if children in rural India are enrolled and learning.
  • Largest citizen-led survey in India.
  • Provides data on enrollment, reading & arithmetic levels (ages 3-16).

Key Highlights

  • Enrollment: 86.8% of 14-18 year olds enrolled in education.
  • Gender Disparity: Fewer females (28.1%) in STEM compared to males (36.3%).
  • Vocational Training: Only 5.6% enrolled, higher at college level (16.2%).
  • Reading Skills:
    • 25% cannot read Class II level text in their regional language.
    • Females outperform males in regional language reading (76% vs 70.9%).
    • Males excel in arithmetic and English reading.
  • Digital Literacy:
    • 90% of youth have a smartphone in the household.
    • Males outperform females in digital tasks.
    • Performance improves with education and reading proficiency.
  • Math Skills:
    • Over 50% struggle with division problems.
    • Around 45% struggle with time-based word problems.

Major Issues

  • Flat learning trajectories: Students who lack foundational skills are unlikely to gain them later.
  • Focus on improvement programs without encouraging students to return to school and read.
  • Decoding simple words is not the challenge; students need guidance, practice, and motivation to read.
  • Lack of reading materials: Only a small fraction of households have materials beyond textbooks.


  • Community libraries: Create vibrant spaces to foster reading, creativity, and critical thinking.
    • Need strong leadership to rekindle interest in reading and attract users.
  • Support for career aspirations: Provide mentorship and guidance to help students evaluate and pursue realistic goals.
  • Leverage digital technology: Equip youth with foundational skills and connect them with relevant professionals.

Way Forward

  • Use data (including ASER) to identify problems and guide solutions.
  • Move beyond lamenting the issues and focus on actionable solutions.
  • Determine where, how, and who needs to take action.





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