HYDERABAD: A draft notification revising the Eco Sensitive Zone (ESZ) status for Kasu Brahmananda Reddy (KBR) National Park would be forwarded to Union environment ministry by the state government. The state government has decided to revise the ESZ of KBR Park to between 3 metres and 29.8 metres from the present 25-35 metres to facilitate Strategic Road Development Plan (SRDP) works.
Forest minister Jogu Ramanna signed the revised ESZ draft file on Friday and the forest department is forwarding the file to the Union environment ministry for issuing a notification inviting objections and suggestions from the citizens. In the light of SRDP where grade separators and multi-level flyovers are proposed around the KBR Park, two proposed flyovers fall in the ESZ while four others fall outside the ESZ. The ESZ at present is about 25-35 metres covering Walk Way of Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority (HMDA) around the boundary of the KBR Park as ESZ from ecological and environmental point of view. The state government wanted to revise the ESZ between 3 metres and 29.8 metres to facilitate the SRDP works.
ESZ areas are notified by the Central government to ensure a ‘buffer zone’ around an ecologically sensitive zone like a national park, to ensure that the areas inside the zone are protected and no construction activity takes place around the zone.Once the draft notification is issued by the MoEF, citizens will be given 60 days time to submit suggestions or objections if any on the proposals of the state government. After this, the Union ministry has to take a final decision, GHMC officials said.
The National Green Tribunal, a few months ago has given its final order over the SRDP around KBR Park. It directed the MoEF to take a final decision on the ESZ status for the park that is one of the few lung spaces in the city.
GHMC has prepared ordinates for the ESZ and fixed boundaries and marking of PROW to the main compound wall at 150 points (chainages) around the KBR park. The proposed ESZ width ranges from 3 metres (at chainage-870, near Film Nagar junction) to 29.80 metres at chainage-2,790 at Maharaja Agrasen Chowk junction). The KBR park is acting as a vast carbon sink for the rapidly developing Hyderabad city and stands as the last vestige of flora, fauna and rock formations representing the rich bio-diversity of Deccan Plateau which includes about 600 plant species, 120 bird species, 2 mammal species, 20 species of reptiles and amphibians, hundreds of insects and other invertebrate species.