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National Board for WildLife decides to observe National Dolphin Day on October 5

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October 5 to be National Dolphin Day (1)

Bhupender Yadav, Union Minister for Environment, Forest & Climate Change, has announced that starting from 2022, the 5th October of every year will be observed as National Dolphin Day. 

The decision to designate the 5th October of every year National Dolphin Day was taken by the standing committee of the National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) during its 67th meeting.

  • The first-ever National Dolphin Day will be observed on 5th October 2022


The day aims to create awareness and encourage community participation in the conservation of dolphins including the Gangetic Dolphin. 

Conservation of Dolphins in India:

A World Wide Fund for Nature(WWF)-India and the Uttar Pradesh forest department assessment in 2012 and 2015 recorded 1,272 dolphins in the Ganga, Yamuna, Chambal, Ken, Betwa, Son, Sharda, Geruwa, Gahagra, Gandak and Rapti.

Gangetic dolphin:

i.The Gangetic dolphin is an indicator species, whose status provides information on the overall condition of the ecosystem and of other species in the Ganga ecosystem and is extremely vulnerable to changes in water quality and flow.

ii.These are categorised as endangered on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature(IUCN) Red List.


i.The Ganges river dolphin was officially discovered in 1801. These dolphins once lived in the Ganges-Brahmaputra-Meghna and Karnaphuli-Sangu river systems of Nepal, India, and Bangladesh but it is extinct from most of their early distribution ranges.

ii.The Ganges river dolphin can only live in freshwater and is essentially blind.

iii.The Government of India declared it the National Aquatic Animal in 2009.

iv.Bihar has already been celebrating October 5 as ‘Dolphin Day’ for the past several years.


Pollution, water diversion, habitat fragmentation, and bycatch are the serious threats faced by these dolphins. 

Major infrastructure projects within this region also poses risk for the population decline in the future. 

Recommendations of the committee:

i.The standing committee also considered 46 proposals for wildlife clearance and recommended several projects such as providing electricity in remote villages in Ladakh and Himachal Pradesh and drinking water supply near a protected area in Karnataka.

ii.The Standing Committee recommended 4 proposals for the construction of earthen dams in Haryana to improve irrigation facilities. 

iii.These dams will also recharge groundwater in the Sanctuary which will benefit the wildlife habitat.

iv.The Standing Committee also recommended a road project under Pradhan Mantri Gram SadakYojana in the State of Uttarakhand in order to provide connectivity to remote villages with appropriate animal passage structures.

v.The committee also recommended a project for harnessing geothermal energy for power generation and other direct heat applications by drilling through rocks overlying the geothermal reservoir in Ladakh