Abdul Rahman Mir

Wildlife Service Awards (2003)

He understands wildlife behaviour and knows what needs to be done to protect forests and animals. He is also willing to risk his life to protect the forests he loves. He is the third generation of his family to have worked in the forests of Dachigam in the Kashmir valley.  Having spent 30 years with the J&K Wildlife Department, he has brought an uncommon honesty and diligence to his work, which springs from a love for wild creatures, particularly the endangered hangul deer. His personal integrity and extraordinary courage he attributes to values imparted by his father and to his mentor, Forest Guard Qasim Wani. Rahman’s valour is illustrated through his actions in catching armed poachers and continual patrolling, even in times of political turmoil and adversity. Even when many abandoned their posts as a result of extremist threats, Abdul Rahman remained steadfast. Such dedication to wildlife, even at times of political vacuum is commendable. The survival of the wildlife of India depends largely on people like him.