From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :
Prelims level : Orang NP
Mains level : NA
The Assam government has recently issued a preliminary notification for adding 200.32 sq. km to the 78.82 sq. km Orang National Park, the State’s oldest reserve, about 110 km northeast of Guwahati.
The government had in September 21 dropped the ‘Rajiv Gandhi’ prefix to Orang given by the government in 1992.
Orang National Park
- Orang NP is located on the northern bank of the Brahmaputra River in the Darrang and Sonitpur districts of Assam.
- It was established as a sanctuary in 1985 and declared a national park in 1999.
- It has a rich flora and fauna, including great Indian rhinoceros, pygmy hog, Asian elephant, wild water buffalo and Bengal tiger.
- Orang, on the northern bank of the river, is strategic to the Kaziranga Orang Riverine Landscape.
- Tigers and rhinos are known to use the islands in this riverine landscape, about 180 km long, to hop between Orang and Kaziranga.
Why in news?
- The Assam government is pursuing a policy for the reintroduction of the gharial that became locally extinct more than six decades ago.
- With better protection, the stretch of the Kaziranga-Orang landscape is ideal for sustaining the gharials.
Back2Basics: National Park
- Even before the Indian independence, sanctuaries had been created in the form of shooting blocks, game reserves or hunting reserves by the provisional governments or by the native rulers in their respective areas.
- In 1936, the first National Park in India was created and named as the Hailey National Park, now called the Corbett National Park, in Uttaranchal.
- The Wildlife Protection Act 1972 provides for the declaration of five types of protected areas viz. National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries, Community Reserves, Conservation Reserves and Tiger Reserves.
- A National Park is defined by state government via notification under the WPA.
- The state government can fix and alter boundaries of the National Parks with prior consultation and approval with National Board of Wildlife.
- There is no need to pass an act for alternation of boundaries of National Parks.
- No human activities are permitted in a National Park.