2 March, 2020
The Centre on 2nd March 2020 declared the National Chambal Sanctuary in Madhya Pradesh, as eco-sensitive zone.
- Madhya Pradesh government has been directed to prepare a Zonal Master Plan.
- This 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.
- The central government hereby notifies an area to an extent of zero to two kilometres around the boundary of National Chambal Sanctuary in the state of Madhya Pradesh as the National Chambal Sanctuary Eco-sensitive Zone.
- According to the ministry establishment of hotels and resorts shall be allowed only in pre defined and designated areas of ecotourism.
- 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.
National Chambal Sanctuary:
- Spread over 435 square kilometres, the National Chambal Sanctuary lies across Sheopur, Morena and Bhind districts of Madhya Pradesh with a length of more than 400 kilometers.
- Sanctary begins in the Vindhya Ranges and extends along the river Chambal and ends in Yamuna River.
- Spreads across Rajasthan,Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.
- It is home to naturally living population of :
- 75 per cent of gharial.
- National Aquatic Animal the fresh water Gangetic Dolphins.
- Nine species of fresh water turtles.
- 180 species of migratory birds.
Eco-Sensitive Zones (ESZs) or Ecologically Fragile Areas (EFAs)
- These are areas notified by the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC), Government of India around Protected Areas , National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries.
- The purpose of declaring ESZs is to create some kind of “shock absorbers” to the protected areas by regulating and managing the activities around such areas.
- They also act as a transition zone from areas of high protection to areas involving lesser protection.
- ESZ are regulated by central government through Min. of Environment, Forests and Climate change (MoEFCC).
- Ministry came out with new guidelines for regulation of such areas in 2011.