• After a 3 decade absence, a Gharial, unique crocodilian species native to the Indian subcontinent, has been spotted in Pakistan’s Punjab province.
  • Experts suggested that the gharial may have come from India during floods and settled in the Satluj river, near the border.
  • The Harike wetland, located 50 km from the border, where the Beas and Satluj rivers meet, served as the release site for 94 gharials under a conservation program initiated by the Punjab government in India between 2017 and 2021.


  • Gharials are a species of crocodilian found in the fresh waters of the northern part of India, primarily in the Chambal River.
  • Scientific name – Gavialis gangeticus
  • They are known for their long, thin snouts.
  • Protection status
    • IUCN Red List-critically endangered
    • CITES –Appendix I
    • Schedule I of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972.
  • They are an indicator species of clean river water.
  • Threats– river pollution, dam construction, fishing operations, floods, illegal sand mining, and poaching.
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