Bears still at Islamabad zoo as sanctuary raises health concerns


Two bears at the Islamabad zoo still haven’t been shifted to Balkasar Bear Sanctuary due to health concerns, the Islamabad High Court was informed on Wednesday.

The sanctuary authorities said that the temperature at the sanctuary is not suitable for the two bears. A German vet is currently treating them.

Justice Athar, while hearing a case on implementation of the court’s verdict on shifting all animals at the Marghazar zoo to suitable sanctuaries, asked why it shouldn’t be investigated why the bears were brought to Islamabad and on whose orders. “Why are you harming animals for the sake of recreation?”

He was informed that former wildlife director Raja Jawad issued a tender and purchased them for the zoo.

The court summoned more details on the transfer of the bears by July 29 and adjourned the hearing.

Many activists rejoiced after the court had ordered the transfer of animals from Marghazar zoo to suitable sanctuaries on May 22. The verdict was announced on three combined petitions: relocation of two brown bears, treatment of Kaavan, and stopping the shooting of stray dogs.

Kaavan, the only elephant at the Islamabad Zoo, is being shifted to Cambodia.