The Bureau learned that the Deputy Inspector General of Forests (Wildlife) of the Ministry of Environment and Forests in New Delhi, India, via his letter dated 10 April 2000, had informed the Centre that the second phase of the rehabilitation plan for Manas for which the twenty-first session of the Committee (Naples, 1997) approved a sum of US$ 90,000, is currently being implemented. The Bureau recalled that the delay in utilising these funds for rehabilitation activities was caused by the unusually heavy rains experienced in 1998. Also, the need to revise the rehabilitation plan to minimise construction activities in parts of the site where security conditions were not yet optimal for maintaining permanent presence of staff and for executing some community support activities to improve collaboration between staff and villagers also caused delays.
The Bureau noted that implementation of this second phase of the rehabilitation plan is due to be completed by early 2001, and accepted the suggestion of the State Party that the Centre/IUCN mission to prepare a progress report, recommended by the twenty-third session of the Committee (Marrakesh, Morocco, 1999), be undertaken in 2001, instead in 2000 as previously foreseen. The Bureau urged that the Centre and IUCN, during the mission in 2001, take special efforts to review the status of the rhino population in Manas and the impact of rehabilitation measures implemented to counter poaching threats on the rhino. Reports received by IUCN indicate that recovery of the rhino population following the loss of more than 30 individuals during the peak of the Bodo militancy between 1989 and 1992 has been slow and continues to be a major concern for site management. The Bureau recommended that the Committee retain this site in the List of World Heritage in Danger.