ALIGARH: “When I was a child, I usually accompanied my grandfather on hunting and perhaps it was the main impetus that drove me to the military service”, recalled Lt. Gen. Zameeruddin Shah, Vice Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University, while addressing the book releasing ceremony of Prof. H. S. A. Yahya’s book “Hindustani Prindey: Khususiat, Ifadiat aur Shanakhat”. He, however, “stopped using his gun for hunting purpose” after coming into contact with the doyen of Wildlife studies in India, Dr. Salim Ali during his stay in Laddakh when he used to accompany him to the spots where Black-necked Crane and Bar-headed Geese foraged and bred.
Gen. Shah urged the students to shoot birds with cameras only. He emphasized the need for conservation of birds and other biodiversity and wildlife elements and congratulated Prof. Yahya for publishing an enlightening book in Urdu on Indian birds.
Emphasizing the importance of nature conservation and role of birds in the upkeep environment, Prof. Masood Ahmad, Dean, Faculty of Life Sciences, congratulated Prof. Yahya for bringing out such a valuable book in Urdu. He urged the students of wildlife to study and observe the nature intricately so that the country’s problem of navian conservation are understood properly and remedial measures are taken.
While introducing the book and the author, the Guest of Honour, Dr. Hamidullah Bhatt, Vice Chairman of Sarva Shikhsha Abhiyan and former Director of National Council for Promotion of Urdu Language (NCPUL), congratulated Prof. Yahya for his contribution in research, publication and conservation of birds and biodiversity of the country. He mentioned about earlier 9 books of Prof. Yahya published on various aspects of biodiversity in English and Urdu. Being a scholar of Urdu himself, Dr. Bhatt mentioned that publishing such an informative book in Urdu will provide quality stuff on wildlife issues in Urdu language.
Dr. Bhatt referred to various policies and program through which the Urdu scholars could contribute to the social needs. He said about 10% of Indian population read, write and understand Urdu and there is pressing need to publish books on scientific discourse in Urdu. Dr. Bhatt appreciative Prof. Yahya for publishing book titld “Biodiversities Conservation: Ethics in Major Religions” published in USA. The book comprised a comparative account of religious backing for the conservation of natural resources and safety of environment. He urged Prof. Yahya to publish Urdu version of the book also.
Prof. Yahya highlighted the salient features of the book through a Power Point presentation. Enumerating the contributions of Dr. Salim Ali, supervisor for his Ph.D., he shed a light on the history of Ornithology in India,. He illustrated the distribution pattern of Indian birds and presented the economic aspect of bird conservation.
Prof. Yahya also highlighted the importance of conservation of birds and the biodiversity under religious teachings. He quoted several verses from the Holy Quran as to how the teachings of Islam and other religions emphasized the conservation of natural resources. Prof. Yahya suggested various measures to control habitat loss, pollution and use of excessive fertilizers and other chemicals to keep the environment safe not only for birds but also for the human beings. He said that the correct identification of a bird species was the key factor for observing it and there was a dearth of information on field guide in Urdu language.
Mr. Shakil Ahmad, Librarian-in-Charge, Maulana Azad Library conducted the programme and proposed a vote of thanks.