Maharashtra Gets Its 50th Wildlife Sanctuary in Kanhargaon

Maharashtra Gets Its 50th Wildlife Sanctuary in Kanhargaon
File Image

The Maharashtra Revenue and Forest Department have notified the Kanhargaon Wildlife Sanctuary on April 5. This sanctuary will spread across 269 square kilometres of area in the state’s Chandrapur district. With this notification, the total number of wildlife sanctuaries in the state now stands at 50. 

This step has been awaited for a while now with the proposal first sent in April of 2013. Officials said that the delay was due to opposition from the Forest Development Corporation of Maharashtra (FDCM) which was carrying out major logging projects in the vicinity.

The area has been notified under the Wildlife Protection Act (1972) and is expected to protect the region’s tiger population with around 20 tigers including cubs currently residing there. The move will also provide shelter for multiple wildlife species that inhabit the area between the Tadoba Tiger Reserve in Chandrapur and the Kawal Wildlife Sanctuary in Telangana.

State Wildlife Board member, Kishor Rithe said, “The tiger population in Chandrapur has grown considerably over the last 10 odd years, and the area which has now been notified is a known tiger breeding area/ corridor that facilitates dispersal of the population from one protected area to another, between Tadoba and Kawal.”

Also readAarey Forest Land To Be Handed Over To SGNP Soon; 5 Acres Allocated For Police Station

Rithe further said that this move will provide a boost to wildlife tourism and other educational initiatives while also decreasing conflicts between tigers and humans. “There is a chance now to provide gainful employment to members of the local community, but also generate revenue for the state,” he added.

While 251 sq km of the 269 sq km is controlled by the FDCM, around 18 sq km of the area belongs to the Central Chanda forest division. The notification means that the FDCM will not be permitted to carry out logging or harvesting operations in the region. 

ReadOver 400 Hectares Of Land In Raigad’s Alibag Taluka Declared As Reserved Forest

To compensate for the loss, the FDCM is seeking an alternative location with up to 250 sq km of usable and productive forest land. Moreover, the FDCM also wants its existing van drivers to be employed by the newly notified wildlife sanctuary. 

“It is all the more important to bring the area under protection because it is a pristine forest. Even though the forest area has been affected due to commercial forestry and timber extraction by the FDCM, we still have natural old trees and natural forest composition, which you rarely find in other parts of the state,” Rithe went on to say.

Also readMaha Govt Turns 250 Sq Km Of Radhanagri Wildlife Sanctuary Into An Eco-Sensitive Zone

MumbaiLive would like to send you latest news updates