National Parks

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National Parks in India

In 1969 the IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources) declared a National Park to be a relatively large area with particular defining characteristics. A National Park was deemed to be a place where:

1.  One or several ecosystems are not materially altered by human exploitation and occupation, where plant and animal species, geo-morphological sites and habitats are of special scientific, educative and recreative interest or which contain a natural landscape of great beauty.

2.  The highest competent authority of the country has taken steps to prevent or eliminate as soon as possible exploitation or occupation in the whole area and to enforce effectively the respect of ecological, geomorphological or aesthetic features which have led to its establishment.

3.  The visitors are allowed to enter, under special conditions, for inspirational, educative, cultural and recreative purposes.

In 1971 these criteria were further expanded upon leading to more clear and defined benchmarks to evaluate a national park. These include:

(i)  A minimum size of 1,000 hectares within zones in which protection of nature takes precedence


(ii)    Statutory legal protection

(iii)    A budget and staff sufficient to provide sufficient effective protection

(iv)   Prohibition of exploitation of natural resources (including the development of dams) qualified by such activities as sport, fishing, the need for management, facilities, etc.

While national parks are generally understood to be administered by national governments (hence the name), in Australia national parks are run by State Governments.

This is a list of all national parks of India. India's first National Park (an IUCN category II protected area) was established in 1935 as Hailey National Park, now known as Jim Corbett National Park. By 1970, India only had five national parks. In 1972, India enacted the Wildlife Protection Act and Project Tiger to safeguard the habitats of conservation reliant species. Further federal legislation strengthening protections for wildlife was introduced in the 1980s. As of April 2007, there are 96 national parks. All national park lands encompass a combined 38,029.18 km², 1.16% of India's total surface area.

Last Updated on Friday, 26 November 2010 01:11