Friday, December 11, 2009

Conch sellers face Naresh Kadyan - Maneka Gandhi wrath

Maneka Gandhi has played havoc with the Odisha conch sellers, alleged senior BJD Lawmaker. Pradeep Maharathy raising the issue during Zero Hour in Assembly, alleged that People for Animals (PFA) Chairperson has not only opposed the sale of conch in India International Trade Fair at New Delhi, but also became instrumental in arresting 2 sales persons from Odisha. He drew attention of the Speaker Pradip Kumar Amat to the reports of arrest of conch sellers and requested to ask the State Government to intervene in the matter. Maharathy said that thousands of people are engaged in selling dead conch shells all over the state and outside Odisha. Interestingly, Conch is the symbol of the BJD, regional political outfit, which is ruling the state for last 9 years. In Hinduism, the Conch is the original horn trumpet, used for proclamation. Lord Vishnu has one called Panchjanya. It is present in every Hindu temple as one of the symbols of Hinduism. A symbol of the Buddha, it is used in Tibetan Buddhism to call religious assemblies. During rituals, it is used both as a musical instrument and as a container for water or agarbattis. So demanding arrest of the conch sellers is just not acceptable for us, said Maharathy. IITF is an annual event and every year conch sellers set up centres to sell these art and crafts, said an official in Information & Public Relations Department. Never before this sorts of opposition was ever raised and every year they were selling conch shells, said Minister I&PR, Prafulla Samal. Mr.Samal said as the sales boys have been arrested, we have moved to the court for their release. Ms.Gandhi has been opposing the sales of conch shells. She said that the people blow their trumpets on conch shells which are the skins of the very rare sea snail or mollusk from the Turbinella family. According to her the conch is supposed to represent life. How killing the animal will bring life is beyond her imagination said Ms.Gandhi. That is why she was opposing sales of conch shells and feels that this is nothing but a criminal act.

हरिद्वार में करोड़ों के दुर्लभ शंख बरामद

हरिद्वार-सांसद मेनका गांधी द्वारा संचालित एनजीआ॓ ‘पीपुल फॉर एनिमल’ ने हरिद्वार में दुर्लभ प्रजाति के वन्य जीवों के अंगों व शंख आदि की हो रही बिक्री को लेकर कड़ा रूख अपनाते हुए पुलिस के सहयोग से विभिन्न जगहों से करोड़ों रूपये मूल्य के दस हजार दुर्लभ प्रजाति के शंख व सपेरों से प्रतिबंधित सांप तथा तोते बरामद कराये। इस बरामदगी में वन विभाग पर मिलीभगत के संदेह के कारण एनजीआ॓ ने गढ़वाल मण्डल के आईजी व एसएसपी हरिद्वार से सम्पर्क साधा था। कार्रवाई के दौरान पुलिस को स्थानीय व्यापारियों का विरोध भी झेलना पड़ा। नगर के सैकड़ों व्यापारियों ने कोतवाली पर जमकर हंगामा काटा। वन्य जीव प्रेमी सांसद मेनका गांधी को उत्तराखण्ड में हो रही तस्करी की शिकायतें मिल रही थी। उन्होंने अपने एनजीआ॓ के जरिये तस्करी की जानकारी हासिल की। जिसमें पाया गया कि वाकई उत्तराखण्ड में वन्य जीव जन्तुओं के अंगों व दुर्लभ एवं प्रतिबंधित प्रजाति के शंखों की जमकर बिक्री हो रही है। एनजीआ॓ का कहना है कि सांपों की दुर्लभ प्रजाति, अजगर व तोतों को उत्तराखंड से पकड़कर दिल्ली के जामा मस्जिद के पास बेचा जा रहा हैं। वहीं दक्षिण राज्यों से करोड़ों रूपये के शंख का अवैध कारोबार उत्तराखण्ड में धड़ल्ले से संचालित किया जा रहा हैं। श्रीमती मेनका गांधी ने इस संदर्भ में आईजी गढ़वाल एमए गणपति, व एसएसपी हरिद्वार संजय गुंज्याल से वार्ता कर अपनी एनजीआ॓ की टीम को हरिद्वार भेजा। यहां पर हर जगह दुर्लभ प्रजाति के शंख बिकते देख उन्होंने दुकानों पर बिल भी देखे जो पूरी तरह से फर्जी बताये गये। पुलिस टीम को साथ लेकर एक चर्चित दुकान पर गये जहां उन्होंने सबसे दुर्लभ प्रजाति का शंख खरीदने का ड्ऱामा रचकर दबिश दी तथा दुकानदार को हिरासत में ले लिया। पुलिस ने एनजीआ॓ को साथ लेकर दुकानदार की निशानदेही पर सप्तसरोवर क्षेत्र स्थित एक गोदाम पर भी छापा मारा। यहां से पुलिस ने लगभग 10 हजार शंख बरामद किये गये जिनकी कीमत बाजार भाव से लगभग ढाई से तीन करोड रूपये बताई जा रही है। एनजीआ॓ की टीम ने कुछ सपेरों को भी पकड़वाया जिनके पास से एक अजगर, एक किंग कोबरा, एक ब्लैक कोबरा, दो घोड़ा पछाड़ तथा कुछ अन्य सांप व तोते बरामद कराये हैं। टीम का मानना है कि पकड़े गये सांपों में ज्यादातर दुर्लभ प्रजाति के हैं। एनजीआ॓ का आरोप है हरिद्वार के वन अधिकारी इस आ॓र ध्यान देने के बजाय वन्य जीव तस्करों को बढ़ावा दे रहे हैं। पुलिस ने फिलहाल दो लोगों को हिरासत में ले रखा है।
When Swami Ramdev was challenged by Brinda Karat on using animal and human parts for his ayurvedic medicines, he went on television to say that he only used pearls and conch shells.

Both these are animal parts. The conch shell is the skin of the marine snail or mollusc who lives inside it and from whose body it grows. Conches eat seaweed and are so active in the sea that they are called "the jumping shellfish” To get the shell the animal has to be brutally killed.

Molluscs have been around for 500 millions years. There are hundreds of varieties of these animals.Some live in the depths of the ocean, some on beaches. They are very useful as scavengers, algae and algae and fungus grazers, active hunters.

But like most other animal groups in today's changing world, no matter where they live, the Molluscs are vulnerable to the changes man is bringing to this earth. We threaten their habitats and food supplies, the purity of the water they breathe and, through unregulated fisheries, their numbers. Some species of molluscs have become extinct because of our activities and others teeter on the brink.
The main reason conch is now almost extinct is the Hindu religion. Now tourism and fake ayurveda has added to its miseries.

The word Conch comes from the Sanskrit Shankh. In Hinduism, the Conch is the original horn trumpet, used for proclamation. Vishnu has one called Panchjanya. It is present in every Hindu temple as one of the symbols of Hinduism. A symbol of the Buddha, it is used in Tibetan Buddhism to call religious assemblies. During rituals, it is used both as a musical instrument and as a container for water or agarbattis.

All Mollusc shells including Conches are sold at all tourism centres, official government souvenir shops, outside temples. Thousands are sold to ayurvedic pharmacies that crush and grind them and use them as a calcium base and then sell these so called medicines pretending they are vegetarian with only herbs and natural minerals.

Unfortunately, this means that fishermen kill thousands of marine molluscs every day. They are collected in shallow, inshore waters by divers. Most of the killing takes place in West Bengal and Tamil Nadu. Three years ago the Ministry for Environment tried to stop this killing and declared the Conch snail a protected species under the Wildlife protection Act 1972. The Chief Minister of West Bengal, in whose constituency most of the killing takes place, came to Delhi and put a lot of pressure to have this protection withdrawn. Balu, the then Environment Minister couldn’t care less about animal or environmental protection. He promptly removed the Conch shell from the list. In the next ten years, there will be no conches left.

Queen conch shells are protected in countries like Australia and New Zealand, which means that you cannot even pick up a conch shells that you find on the beach. No trade is allowed and if the customs find tourists bringing them in, they are confiscated. Unfortunately this has not happened in India and you can purchase conch shells at local markets.

Let me introduce you to the Molluscs and the Conch. These marine animals start their lives near the shallow coasts in semi tropical and tropical waters. As they age they move to increasingly deeper waters. They come nearer the shores in winter and then move again in summer . While some molluscs can swim, most are attached or live creeping along the bottom. Some are stationary filter feeders that sift small particles of food through their gills and their nervous and muscle systems are used for opening and closing their shells and digging themselves deeper into the sand.

They have one foot and pedal it in the water to hop around .Adults are most active at night, and can travel up to 100 yards a night.They reach sexual maturity in 3-4 years and lay eggs from April to August.They can live till 25 years.
The body is divided into a head, a mouth with a toothed tongue, muscular foot, and gut hump containing the body organs. Molluscs have a blood, nervous and reproductive system, and an excretory system with kidneys and gills, which are used to extract oxygen from the water and to strain out organisms from the water or bottom mud. They have little finger like threads called cilia, which take the food to the mouth. The skin that covers all this is called the mantle and it is, like our skin, a sensory organ. It also produces the acids and ink for defence, mucus for protection.

Molluscs hatch from the egg complete with a tiny shell that is often still there as a tiny curl at the top of the adult shell. The shell provides protection from damage and predators and on land; it prevents the loss of body fluids. It is secreted by glandular cells and is calcium carbonate. Shells vary in shape size thickness, texture and shine. Marine ones are often thick and heavy while land specimens are light.

Limpets, cowries, cone shells, winkles, abalones, oysters, conches – all these are living animals. The sacred Indian Shank or Sacred Conch is a mollusc called Turbinella Pyrum. This unique mollusc is found only in the Gulf of Mannar or in the Gulf of Khambat, close to the Narmada river mouth or in the Makran Coast near Karachi. They are now a threatened species.

The slow moving nature of the conchs, their pinkish-rose shells, and their frequency in shallow waters make them an easy target for fisherman. The industry is mainly in Kolkata where the animals are killed and the shells are cut with saws by shellworkers and made into bangles. Bengali. Brides wear the shankha bangles. The others are sold to temple shops. Some are carved on top for tourists. West Bengal Handicrafts Development Corporation has an office in Tamil Nadu to purchase shankha shells from the pearl divers of the Gulf of Mannar. The annual turnover is about 40 lakh shells. A diver’s average daily catch is about 10 shells.

If you object to animals being sacrificed in temples, remember that every time you buy a conch you are doing the same. Every time an ayurvedic medicine lists its ingredients as shank based, it is not vegetarian. To kill molluscs to use their shells for calcium is so unnecessary when you have so many non-living calcium resources.
You make the decision with your pocket as to whether these gentle defenseless strange animals will last another 10 years or not.

Maneka Gandhi

Rare conches seized at trade fair, 4 held in Delhi - Naresh Kadyan
Conch shells seized in Shahdara raid

: At a raid conducted in Shahdara, People for Animals seized 180 shells and conches that are prohibited for trade. The poached items include ornate shells, some of which are protected under Schedule 1 of the Wildlife Protection Act, the highest protection accorded to any species. Accused Ankur Gupta (28), who runs an export shop in Shahadara's Farsh Bazar, has been arrested. Thirty pieces of bullmouth and horned helmet shells, both under Schedule 1, were recovered. Other protected shell species of trapezium conch, top shell, map cowry and spider were also seized. "Each piece sells for as much as Rs 15,000 to 20,000 and the trader was looking to export them,spokeman of PFA said.

Conch sellers shell-shocked

PFA Complaint
Two held for selling banned items - Naresh Kadyan
The local police seized about 400 conches and nearly 8,000 ‘kodian’ from two showrooms in Sector 20 on the basis of a PFA complaint and arrested two persons here this evening.

A case was registered against Madan Singh and Surinder Jain, owner of Pawan Emporium and Rudraksh Emporium, respectively, under various sections of the Wildlife Protection Act, 1972, at the sector 19 police station.

Earlier, a team of four members of the PFA had visited a shop as customers and asked for these banned items.

After assuring themselves of the banned material being available at the two shops, they immediately informed PFA chairperson Maneka Gandhi, who requested senior police officials in the city to conduct a raid. further said the material seized was worth Rs 3 crore in the market, adding that the matter came to light during the International Trade Fair at the Pragati Maidan in New Delhi, where some of these banned items were being sold at stalls.

...तब तो मंदिरों में शंख बजाना हो जाएगा मुश्किल

चंडीगढ़। भगवान विष्णु के हाथों में शोभा देते 'शंख ’ का आप कुछ दिनों बाद 'मॉडल ’ ही देख सकेंगे। दीपावली पर अगर आप लक्ष्मी-नारायण के आह्वान के लिए शंख बजा रहे हों और आपके घर आ जाएं क्राइम ब्रांच और पीपुल्स फार एनिमल्स (पीएफए) के अधिकारी तो आश्चर्य तो होगा ही। पीएफए ने अब धार्मिक आस्था पर ब्रेक लगाना शुरू कर दिया है।

पीपुल्स फार एनिमल्स ने चंडीगढ़ सेक्टर-20 स्थित एक दुकान से कुछ शंख को दुर्लभ प्रजाति का बताकर कब्जे में लिया है। हां, यह अलग बात है कि अधिकारी खुद इस बात की जानकारी के लिए भटकते रहे कि आखिरकार यह दुर्लभ प्रजाति का शंख है या नहीं। पीएफए की इस हरकत से मंदिरों के पुजारियों और विश्व हिंदू परिषद के कार्यकर्ताओं का गुस्सा फूट पड़ा है। पीएफए और क्राइम ब्रांच की छापेमारी को देखते हुए मंदिरों के पुजारियों ने कहा कि इससे हिंदुओं की भावनाएं आहत हो रही हैं। हर मंदिर, घर में शंख और कौड़ी है, जिसे पूजा के समय और आरती के वक्त बजाया जाता है। धार्मिक संगठन अब पीएफए से यह पूछताछ करने की तैयारी में हैं कि किस आधार पर उन्होंने चंडीगढ़ में छापेमारी की और दुर्लभ प्रजाति की पहचान क्या है? विश्व हिंदू परिषद के महासचिव नरेश अरोड़ा के अनुसार यदि जीव हत्या को रोकना है तो पीएफए को बंदरगाहों के साथ नदियों के किनारों पर ध्यान रखना चाहिए। आमतौर से जो शंख मार्केट में बेचे जाते हैं, वे समुद्र के किनारे बहकर आते हैं। हरिद्वार और आंध्र प्रदेश के साथ ही समुद्र के किनारों पर खूब शंख मिलते हैं। लक्ष्मी नारायण मंदिर के पुजारी रघुवंश झा के अनुसार शंख के लिए छापेमारी हिंदुओं की आस्था पर चोट है।

शंख का महत्व

भगवान विष्णु के हाथ में शंख, दूसरे हाथ में सुदर्शन चक्र, तीसरे हाथ में गदा और चौथे हाथ में पद्म रहता है। लक्ष्मी नारायण के आवाहन के लिए शंखनाद किया जाता है। शंख में श्रद्धालु चावल भरकर घर में रखते हैं। इसकी ध्वनि से कई बीमारियां भी दूर होती हैं। यदि शंख को कान से लगाकर ध्यान से सुनें तो उसमें समुद्र किनारे की मद्धिम ध्वनि सुनाई देती है। यही नहीं, शंख के प्रयोग से दवाएं बनाई जाती हैं। इसका नाद करने से फेफड़े भी मजबूत होते हैं।

Law about conches steps out of the shell

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