TN notifies first biodiversity heritage site in Madurai
Chennai, Nov 22 (PTI) Tamil Nadu has notified Arittapatti and Meenakshipuram villages in Madurai district as the first biodiversity heritage site aimed at preserving the rich biological repository in the region, the government said on Tuesday.
The village Arittapatti consists of a chain of seven barren granite hillocks. The distinctive landscape of rocky hills acts as a watershed and supports 72 lakes, 200 natural spring pools and three checkdams.
The Tamil Nadu government has notified 193.215 hectares of land area in Arittapatti and Meenakshipuram villages in Madurai district as the 'Arittapatti Biodiversity Heritage site' under the Biological Diversity Act of 2002, Additional Chief Secretary, Environment, Climate Change and Forest Department, Supriya Sahu said.
One of the water bodies in the region 'Anaikondan lake' was built during the Pandiyas period in the 16th century while the hillocks in Arittapatti village have rich biological and historical significance with presence of 250 bird species and wildlife.
The decision to declare Arittapatti as a 'biodiversity heritage site' was made after consulting the local communities, department of archaeology, Tamil Nadu Minerals Ltd and other stakeholders.
The site features various megalithic structures, Tamil Brahmi inscriptions, Jain beds and 2,200 year old rock-cut temples lending it historical value, she said. The notification as a 'bio-diversity site' would strengthen the conservation efforts with the participation of the local communities. It would help to preserve the rich biological and historical repository of the area, she said.
Early this month, the government notified the Cauvery South Wildlife Sanctuary on 68,640 hectares as the state's 17th wildlife sanctuary of the state. PTI VIJ VIJ SS SS