Srinagar: The Government of India has unveiled a draft notification to declare 69.97 square kilometers around the boundary of Kazinag National Park, Limber Wildlife Sanctuary and Lachipora Wildlife Sanctuary in Baramulla district as eco-sensitive zone.
The Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change has notified the proposal to seek suggestions of the public over it within a time-frame of 60 days.
“…………..in exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) and clauses (v) and (xiv) of sub-sections (2) and (3) of section 3 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 (29 of 1986), 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 0 (zero) to 5 kilometers around the boundary of Kazinag National Park, Limber Wildlife Sanctuary & Lachipora Wildlife Sanctuary, in the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir as Kazinag National Park, Limber Wildlife Sanctuary & Lachipora Wildlife Sanctuary eco-sensitive zone,” reads the notification.
The Kazinag National Park, Limber Wildlife Sanctuary and Lachipora Wildlife Sanctuary are spread over 181 square kilometers in north Kashmir’s Baramulla district.
Spread over 89 square kilometers, Kazinag has been notified as a National Park on December 18, 2007. Limber Wildlife Sanctuary comprising an area of 12 square kilometers was notified on March 19, 1987 and Lachipora Wildlife Sanctuary comprising an area of 80 square kilometers has been notified on March 19, 1987.
The Kazinag National Park, Limber Wildlife Sanctuary, and Lachipora Wildlife Sanctuary harbour the last viable population of Pir Panjal Markhor (Capra falconeri) and endemic Kashmir musk deer (Moschus cupreus). The area provides pristine locations for nature lovers, bird watchers, mountaineers, ecologists, researchers and tourists.
According to the notification, the Union Territory government shall prepare a zonal master plan for ESZ within a period of two years from the publication of this notification in consultation with local people.
“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,” reads the notification. —(KNO)