In news: Recently, 82-member rhino protection force deployed in Kaziranga  to combat poachers and understand animal behaviour.

More about the news: 

  • The SRPF personnel will be posted under eight ranges of Kaziranga National Park to control rhino poaching.
  • The force has been raised by the initiative of both the central and state governments.
  • The selected trainees received 43 weeks of rigorous commando training.
  • The process of setting up the special force was started in 2015 on the recommendations of the National Tiger Conservation Authority. 

Kaziranga National Park is a national park in the Golaghat, Karbi Anglong and Nagaon districts of the state of Assam, India. The sanctuary, which hosts two-thirds of the world's great one-horned rhinoceroses, is a World Heritage Site.

Indian Rhino: Great one horned Rhino

  • The Indian rhinoceros is a rhinoceros species native to the Indian subcontinent. It is listed as Vulnerable on the IUCN Red List and in Appendix I of CITES.
  • Habitat: Alluvial grassland and riverine forest.
  • Range countries:  It is found commonly in Nepal, Bhutan, Pakistan and India, with India being home to 2,200 rhinos, or over 85 percent of the population.
  • In India Rhinos are found in parts of Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Assam. 

Indian Rhino Vision 2020 (IRV 2020):

  • It aims to increase the numbers of wild rhinos in Assam from 2,001 – the population at the time it was launched – to 3,000, spread across seven protected areas. 
  • The rhino population in Assam now stands at 2,626 which is home to 70 per cent of the total population.
  • IRV 2020 aims to translocate Rhinos from Kaziranga National Park and Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary to five other protected areas namely Manas, Laokhowa, Buracharpori-Kochmora, Dibrusaikhowa and Orang. 
  • Translocations of Rhinos are being done in order to avert the risks associated with having an entire rhino population concentrated in one specific area. The first translocations took place from Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary to Manas National Park.