Published on: December 12, 2022

Tungareshwar Wildlife Sanctuary

Tungareshwar Wildlife Sanctuary

Why in news? The Supreme Court, exempted Maharashtra’s Tungareshwar Wildlife Sanctuary (TWS) from order mandating the creation of a one-kilometre eco-sensitive zone (ESZ) around all Protected Areas in India

What is an eco-sensitive zone (ESZ)

  • Ecologically Fragile Areas (EFAs) areas around Protected Areas, National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries
  • Notified by the MoEFCC under the Environment Protection Act of 1986
  • Aim – 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
  • The Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 does not mention the word “Eco-Sensitive Zones”. It says that Central Government can restrict areas in which any industries, operations or processes or class of industries, operations or processes shall not be carried out or shall be carried out subject to certain safeguards.
  • An ESZ could go up to 10 kilometres around a protected area as provided in the Wildlife Conservation Strategy, 2002

Why the interference of the court

  • There are instances of notified forests within city areas, where urban activities will take place
  • The area notified as forest on the route between Jaipur city and its Airport.
  • If ESZ is accepted then the entire road will be demolished and converted into forest that results in no connectivity to city
  • Thus court has exempted the area

About Tungareshwar Wildlife Sanctuary

  • Location : On a plateau east of Vasai and Virar in Palghar district ,north of Mumbai in the Indian state
  • It forms a corridor between Sanjay Gandhi National Park and Tansa Wildlife Sanctuary.
  • Administrative control : Sanjay Gandhi National Park Division
  • There is a temple at about 3 kms from the Tungareshwar Wild Life Sanctuary base