March 15, 2019

Bannerghatta National Park’s Eco-Sensitive Zone (ESZ) will remain at 169 despite thousands of citizens formally objecting to the reduction of nearly 100 sq. km. as compared to the original proposal.

Bannerghatta National Park (BNP): 

  • Location: 
    • Bannerghatta National Park is located near Bangalore, Karnataka in the hills of the Anekal range. 

    • The park is part of a wildlife corridor for elephants which connects the BR Hills and the Sathyamangalam forest. The park is contiguous with Talli reserve forest in the southeast and Bilikal forest in the south. 

  • Recognition: 
    • It was declared as a National Park in 1974. 

    • In 2002 a portion of the park, became a biological reserve, the Bannerghatta Biological Park. It is the first biological park in India to have a fenced forested elephant sanctuary. 

    • In 2006, India's first butterfly enclosure was inaugurated at the park. 

Recent decision: 

  • In the 33rd ESZ Expert Committee meeting of the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MOEF) held on February 28, members recommended finalisation after ‘detailed deliberations’ of the November 5 draft notification which declared an ESZ area of 169 around BNP. 

  • This represents a 37% reduction from the first draft notification issued in 2016 which had marked an ESZ area of 268.9

  • The new ESZ will range from 100 metres (towards Bengaluru) to 1 kilometre (in Ramanagaram district) from the periphery of the protected area. 

  • Final notification expected in four months. 

Source : The Hindu