With the revoking of GO 111, the fate of flora and fauna in the Mrugavani National Park, already under pressure from construction activities, will get worse as there will be a major spurt in real estate activity.
The eco-sensitive zone (ESZ) around the park, which falls under the GO - 111 catchment area, has been proposed to be curtailed to 50 metres. This is unlike the 1 km ESZ around Vanasthalipuram deer park here, sources in the forest department said. As per the Environment Protection Act, 1986, areas within 10km of the boundaries of the national parks and sanctuaries are notified as ESZs, although the restriction was proposed to be eased in many areas across the country. Starting from 1km to 500 metres, the ESZ was proposed to be reduced to 100 metres and later to 50 metres by the state government. The plans to junk the order will put yet another national park under threat of pollution and it will face the adverse effects of urbanisation, environmentalists warn. The 800 acre wildlife sanctuary, home to 650 spotted deer and around 50 Sambar deer, has an 80 acre core zone that visitors can access and a 720 acre buffer zone for wildlife protection. Originally a 1,211 acre park, the area has been bisected into two with the outer ring road passing through it, leaving a 411 acre wildlife reserve forest on the other side. Construction activity near the national park is regulated.
Erection of buildings of more than two stories or over 25 feet height is prohibited up to 10 metres from the buffer zone boundary. Use of polythene bags, widening of roads and movement of vehicular traffic at night are also among the list of regulated activities in Mrugavani deer park ESZ