Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change : Extent and boundaries of Eco-sensitive Zone

Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change : Extent and boundaries of Eco-sensitive Zone

 MINISTRY OF ENVIRONMENT, FOREST AND CLIMATE CHANGE 

NOTIFICATION

New Delhi, the 18th June, 2021

S.O. 2409(E).—WHEREAS, a draft notification was published in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary, vide notification of the Government of India in the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change number S.O. 377(E), dated the 22nd January, 2019, inviting objections and suggestions from all persons likely to be affected thereby within the period of sixty days from the date on which copies of the Gazette containing the said notification were made available to the public;

AND WHEREAS, copies of the Gazette containing the said draft notification were made available to the public on the 22nd January, 2019;

AND WHEREAS, objections and suggestions were received from persons and stakeholders in response to the aforesaid draft notification were duly considered in the Ministry;

Extent and boundaries of Eco-sensitive Zone

AND WHEREAS, the Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary located in Chittoor and Cuddapah Districts of Andhra Pradesh includes the holy and sacred seven hills, the abode of Lord Venkateswara. The reserved forest of the sanctuary forming part of Eastern Ghats consist unique fauna and flora. The highly endangered flora like Cycas beddomei and highly priced endemic species like Pterocarpus santalinus grows luxuriantly. The entire Sanctuary is a uninhabited large chunk of dry deciduous red sanders bearing forests forming catchment to Swarnamukhi and Penna rivers both in Chittoor and Cuddapah Districts;

AND WHEREAS, wildlife belongs to Schedule I, II, III and IV are occur in the Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary. The forests of the reserve harbour certain endangered animals like, mouse deer (Chevrotain), Indian giant squirrel (Ratufa indica), slender loris (Loris tardigradus), golden gecko (Gekko badenii), leopard (Panthera pardus), tiger (Panthera tigris), elephant (Elephas maximus), sloth bear (Melursus ursinus), wild boar (Sus scrofa), four- horned antelope (Tetracerus quadricornis), spotted deer (Axis axis), sambar deer (Rusa unicolor), Bonnet macaque (Macaca radiata), mongoose (Herpestidae), wild dog (Lycaon pictus), black buck (Antilope cervicapra), jackal (Canis aureus), fox (Vulpes vulpes), civet cat (Paradoxurus), barking deer (Muntiacus muntjak), jungle cat (Felis chaus) are some of other animals commonly found in this area. Pangolins, pythons, pea fowls, grey jungle fowl, partridges, quail, crested serpent eagle, ashy crowned finch lark, Indian roller, kingfishers and white bellied woodpecker etc., are also found in Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary. It is estimated that 215 species of birds are reported in Seshachalam Forests. Yellow throated bulbul, an endangered bird species is found to exist in the forests of Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary;

AND WHEREAS, the Kalyani, Kumaradhara, Pasupudhara and Papavinasanam dams, the prime drinking water resources of Tirumala and Tirupati townships are present within Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary and are also source of drinking water to wild animals during pinch period. Besides these, Rallavagu, Lothuvanka, Malleru, Thumburutheerthamvanka, Talakonavanka and Gunjana which are the tributaries of Swarnamukhi and Penna originates and drains through this Sanctuary. The core area with high hillock sand deep valleys and with natural springs consists of thick forests, with vivid flora and fauna. The area also consists of natural grass lands;

AND WHEREAS, to protect and improve the rare, endemic, endangered flora and fauna of the area, Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary was declared vide G.O.Ms. No. 354 F & RD (For-III) Department, dated 2nd September, 1985 and the core area of the sanctuary was declared as a National Park during 1989 vide G. O. Ms. No. 383 E.F.S & T (For-III) Department, dated 16th October, 1989. Final notification of Sri Venkateswara National Park was issued vide G. O. MS. No. 58 E.F. S&T (For-III) Department, dated 13th May, 1998 under section 35 of Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 . The area was finally notified as Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary vide G.O. Ms.No.59 Environment Forestry Science & Technology (For-III) dated 13th May, 1998. Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary comprises of 525.97 square kilometres area and spread over Chittoor District and Cuddapah District. Sri Venkateswara National Park comprises of an area of 353.63 square kilometres and is located within Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary;

AND WHEREAS, the Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary has various rare and endemic flora species, such as Dalbergia latifolia, Cochlospermum religiosum, Dillenia indica, Hybanthus enneaspermus, Maba buxifolia, Curcuma domestica etc. Some endangered plant species of the Sanctuary include Homalium zeylanicum, Butea monosperma, Rhynchosia heynei and Tephrosia species. The endemic species found in the sanctuary include Pterocarpus santalinus, Santalum album, Boswellia ovalifoliolata, Pimpinella tirupatiensis, Syzygium alternifolium and Terminalia pallid etc.;

AND WHEREAS, it is necessary to conserve and protect the area, the extent and boundaries of Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary which are specified in paragraph 1 as Eco-sensitive Zone from ecological, environmental and biodiversity point of view and to prohibit industries or class of industries and their operations and processes in the said Eco-sensitive Zone;

NOW, THEREFORE, in exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) and clauses (v) and (xiv) of sub-section (2) and sub-section (3) of section 3 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 (29 of 1986) (hereafter in this notification referred to as the Environment Act), read with sub-rule (3) of rule 5 of the Environment (Protection) Rules, 1986, the Central Government hereby notifies an area to an extent varying from zero (due to developed Tirupathi township at southern side) to 10 kilometres around the boundary of Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary, in Chittoor District and Cuddapah Districts in the State of Andhra Pradesh as the Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary Eco-sensitive Zone (hereafter in this notification referred to as the Eco-sensitive Zone) details of which are as under, namely: -

1. Extent and boundaries of Eco-sensitive Zone.

(1) The Eco-sensitive Zone shall be to an extent of zero (due to developed Tirupathi township at southern side) to 10 kilometres around the boundary of Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary and the area of the Eco-sensitive Zone is 448 square kilometres.

(2) The boundary description of Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary and its Eco-sensitive Zone is appended in Annexure-I.

(3) The maps of the Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary demarcating Eco-sensitive Zone along with boundary details and latitudes and longitudes are appended as Annexure-IIA and Annexure-IIB.

(4) Lists of geo-coordinates of the boundary of Sri Venkateswara Wildlife Sanctuary and Eco-sensitive Zone are given in Table A and Table B of Annexure-III.

(5) The list of villages falling in the Eco-sensitive Zone along with their geo co-ordinates at prominent points is appended as Annexure-IV.

2. Zonal Master Plan for Eco-sensitive Zone.-

(1) The State Government shall, for the purposes of the Eco- sensitive Zone prepare a Zonal Master Plan within a period of two years from the date of publication of this notification in the Official Gazette, in consultation with local people and adhering to the stipulations given in this notification for approval of the competent authority in the State.

(2) The Zonal Master Plan for the Eco-sensitive Zone shall be prepared by the State Government in such manner as is specified in this notification and also in consonance with the relevant Central and State laws and the guidelines issued by the Central Government, if any.

(3) The Zonal Master Plan shall be prepared in consultation with the following Departments of the State Government, for integrating the ecological and environmental considerations into the said plan:-

  • (i) Environment;
  • (ii) Forest and Wildlife;
  • (iii) Agriculture;
  • (iv) Revenue;
  • (v) Urban Development;
  • (vi) Tourism;
  • (vii) Rural Development;
  • (viii) Irrigation and Flood Control;
  • (ix) Municipal;
  • (x) Panchayati Raj;
  • (xi) Andhra Pradesh State Pollution Control Board; and
  • (xii) Public Works Department.

(4) The Zonal Master Plan shall not impose any restriction on the approved existing land use, infrastructure and activities, unless so specified in this notification and the Zonal Master Plan shall factor in improvement of all infrastructure and activities to be more efficient and eco-friendly.

(5) The Zonal Master Plan shall provide for restoration of denuded areas, conservation of existing water bodies, management of catchment areas, watershed management, groundwater management, soil and moisture conservation, needs of local community and such other aspects of the ecology and environment that need attention.

(6) The Zonal Master Plan shall demarcate all the existing worshipping places, villages and urban settlements, types and kinds of forests, agricultural areas, fertile lands, green area, such as, parks and like places, horticultural areas, orchards, lakes and other water bodies with supporting maps giving details of existing and proposed land use features.

(7) The Zonal Master Plan shall regulate development in Eco-sensitive Zone and adhere to prohibited and regulated activities listed in the Table in paragraph 4 and also ensure and promote eco-friendly development for security of local communities’ livelihood.

(8) The Zonal Master Plan shall be co-terminus with the Regional Development Plan.

(9) The Zonal Master Plan so approved shall be the reference document for the Monitoring Committee for carrying out its functions of monitoring in accordance with the provisions of this notification.

3. Measures to be taken by the State Government.- The State Government shall take the following measures for giving effect to the provisions of this notification, namely:-

(1) Land use.– (a) Forests, horticulture areas, agricultural areas, parks and open spaces earmarked for recreational purposes in the Eco-sensitive Zone shall not be used or converted into areas for commercial or residential or industrial activities:

Provided that the conversion of agricultural and other lands, for the purposes other than that specified at part (a) above, within the Eco-sensitive Zone may be permitted on the recommendation of the Monitoring Committee, and with the prior approval of the competent authority under Regional Town Planning Act and other rules and regulations of Central Government or State Government as applicable and vide provisions of this notification, to meet the residential needs of the local residents and for activities such as:-

  • (i) widening and strengthening of existing roads and construction of new roads;
  • (ii) construction and renovation of infrastructure and civic amenities;
  • (iii) small scale industries not causing pollution;
  • (iv) cottage industries including village industries; convenience stores and local amenities supporting eco-tourism including home stay; and
  • (v) promoted activities given in paragraph 4:

Provided further that no use of tribal land shall be permitted for commercial and industrial development activities without the prior approval of the competent authority under Regional Town Planning Act and other rules and regulations of the State Government and without compliance of the provisions of article 244 of the Constitution or the law for the time being in force, including the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 (2 of 2007):

Provided also that any error appearing in the land records within the Eco-sensitive Zone shall be corrected by the State Government, after obtaining the views of Monitoring Committee, once in each case and the correction of said error shall be intimated to the Central Government in the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change:

Provided also that the correction of error shall not include change of land use in any case except as provided under this sub-paragraph;

(b) efforts shall be made to reforest the unused or unproductive agricultural areas with afforestation and habitat restoration activities.

(2) Natural water bodies.-The catchment areas of all natural springs shall be identified and plans for their conservation and rejuvenation shall be incorporated in the Zonal Master Plan and the guidelines shall be drawn up by the State Government in such a manner as to prohibit development activities at or near these areas which are detrimental to such areas.

(3) Tourism or eco-tourism.- 

  • (a) All new eco-tourism activities or expansion of existing tourism activities within the Eco-sensitive Zone shall be as per the Tourism Master Plan for the Eco-sensitive Zone;
  • (b) the Tourism Master Plan shall be prepared by the State Department of Tourism in consultation with the State Departments of Environment and Forests;
  • (c) the Tourism Master Plan shall form a component of the Zonal Master Plan;
  • (d) the Tourism Master Plan shall be drawn based on the study of carrying capacity of the Eco-sensitive Zone;
  • (e) the activities of eco-tourism shall be regulated as under, namely:-

(i) new construction of hotels and resorts shall not be allowed within one kilometre from the boundary of the protected area or upto the extent of the Eco-sensitive Zone, whichever is nearer:

Provided that beyond the distance of one kilometre from the boundary of the protected area till the extent of the Eco-sensitive Zone, the establishment of new hotels and resorts shall be allowed only in pre-defined and designated areas for eco-tourism facilities as per Tourism Master Plan;

(ii) all new tourism activities or expansion of existing tourism activities within the Eco-sensitive Zone shall be in accordance with the guidelines issued by the Central Government in the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change and the eco-tourism guidelines issued by the National Tiger Conservation Authority (as amended from time to time) with emphasis on eco-tourism, eco- education and eco-development;

(iii) until the Zonal Master Plan is approved, development for tourism and expansion of existing tourism activities shall be permitted by the concerned regulatory authorities based on the actual site specific scrutiny and recommendation of the Monitoring Committee and no new hotel, resort or commercial establishment construction shall be permitted within Eco-sensitive Zone area.

(4) Natural heritage.- All sites of valuable natural heritage in the Eco-sensitive Zone, such as the gene pool reserve areas, rock formations, waterfalls, springs, gorges, groves, caves, points, walks, rides, cliffs, etc. shall be identified and a heritage conservation plan shall be drawn up for their preservation and conservation as a part of the Zonal Master Plan. Click here to read more.

Source: https://egazette.nic.in/WriteReadData/2021/227730.pdf

नोट :- हमारे वेबसाइट www.indiangovtscheme.com पर ऐसी जानकारी रोजाना आती रहती है, तो आप ऐसी ही सरकारी योजनाओं की जानकारी पाने के लिए हमारे वेबसाइट www.indiangovtscheme.com से जुड़े रहे। 
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