Gujjars loose unique Yarkandi-Bakerwali Horse: Study


JAMMU, JAN 31: The nomadic Gujjars and Bakerwals have lost the rare traditional , indigenous and unique specie of “Yarkandi-Bakerwali” horse during past decades and three other rare native species of horses distinctive with them since centuries are considered most threatened in the world and likely to evaporate in next few decades said a study conducted by Tribal Research and Cultural Foundation-a national organization working on Gujjars.
Releasing the study, Dr. Javed Rahi, Secretary of the Tribal Research and Cultural Foundation, told: "In the last 40 years the nomadic Gujjars have lost at least a dozen rare indigenous species animals including most popular “Yarkandi-Bakerwali’ spices of horse idiosyncratic with shepherd Bakerwals - and three other species called Bharssi , Janskari and Kaliani are disappearing fastly. He said the Yarkandi-Bakerwali specie of horse was distinctive with migratory Gujjars since 500 AD when they migrated towards India and settled here in Himalayan region. As per study the unique spices of Yarkandi-Bakerwali horse had disappeared due to wrong policies of Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) under Union Ministry of Agriculture who introduced certain new breeds to get more results in Himalayan Belts ". We have totally lost this unique specie since early seventies, the study said. The study observed that "Most of Gujjars and Bakerwals who are unhappy with new species available after cross breeding of their livestock wish to switch over to their traditional breeds but such species do not exist anywhere in the Himalayan belt of India.
In same difficult areas of the Himalayan Region some of the new breeds of horses have almost failed to deliver the required results and in the meanwhile the rarest rare of species which were for mountainous and cold regions of the area have been finished to take the place, said the study. It is astonishing that no genetic study has been ever conducted to preserved the distinct characteristics of the primitive traditional specie of the horse distinctive with Gujjars and Bakerwals and without the knowledge of consequences, such species have lost their existence, the study said . The study said when new species of horses were Introduced no steps were taken at that point of time for preservation of indigenous spices with nomads with the result where cross breed does not work they are not in a position to switch back to original species.
The study, in the end, has hoped that it is possible a few Yarkandi-Bakerwali spice of horse idiosyncratic with nomadic Gujjars may have been still preserved in some areas of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir , Afghanistan or Yarkant and the same needs to be imported to Kashmiri to revive the traditional species in the state. Dr. Rahi the National Secretary of Tribal Research and cultural foundation has appealed to the state government and demanded that in order to save the existing rarest of rare species of livestock of nomadic Gujjars and Bakerwals a special team be constituted and steps be taken on war footing.

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