Heritage site in Tamil Nadu: The Government of Tamil Nadu issued a notification declaring Arittapatti Village near Melur in Madurai district as a biodiversity heritage site under Section 37 of the Biodiversity Diversity Act, 2002. The Biodiversity Heritage site is situated in an area of 193.21 hectares and it is the first site to be notified in the Southern State.
As per the order issued by Supriya Sahu, Additional Chief Secretary, Environment, Forests & Climate Change also said that the declaration of the site has been made under Section 37 of the Biological Diversity Act, 2002.
Congratulations Madurai 🎉 Arittapatti in Madurai gets Notified by GOTN as the first Biodiversity Heritage Site in Tamil Nadu. #Arittapatti is nothing less than a biodiversity paradise with several endemic species and a historical heritage which dates back to thousands of years pic.twitter.com/4YxBQrsNmb
— Supriya Sahu IAS (@supriyasahuias)
November 22, 2022
First Biodiversity Heritage Site in Tamil Nadu: Significance
Declaring Arittapatti Village as Tamil Nadu’s first biodiversity heritage site will strengthen the biodiversity and conservation efforts with the participation of local communities.
The initiative will also help in preserving the rich biological and historical repository of the area.
Tamil Nadu’s first Biodiversity Heritage Site: Key Points
1. The site comprising 139.63 hectares in Arittapatti Village (Melur Block) and 53.8 hectares in Meenakshipuram Village (Madurai East Taluk) will be known as the Arittapatti Biodiversity Heritage Site.
2. The Arittapatti Village is surrounded by a chain of seven barren granite hillocks that act as a watershed and support close to 72 lakes, 200 natural spring pools, and three check dams.
3. The village has a rich historical and biological significance with the presence of around 250 bird species, including three raptor species.
4. The site also features various megalithic structures, Tamil Brahmi Inscriptions, Jain beds, and 2200 years old rock cut temples adding to its historical value.
What is a Biodiversity Heritage Site?
Biodiversity Heritage Sites are the areas that are unique, ecologically fragile ecosystems having rich biodiversity comprising of any one or more endemic species or fossil beds or components having cultural and esthetic values.
The Biodiversity Heritage Site is also a step that adds to the conservation of the environment, while also protecting the community dependent on it. As per Section 37 of the Biological Diversity Act, the State Governments are empowered to notify in the official gazette, in consultation with local bodies, areas of biodiversity importance as the Biodiversity Heritage sites.