IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


20th July, 2023 Environment

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  • In STMR, Megamalai division in Theni, Tamilnadu, 12 illegal, unauthorised or unrecognised resorts were identified by state forest department of Tamilnadu.
  • These details were revealed by an RTI filed by S. Suryanarayanamoorthy.

Other Details

  • An RTI was filed to
    • Sought the details about the number of illegal or unauthorised, or unrecognised resorts in SMTR.
    • Know the initiatives taken by the state government to remove or regularise the resorts.


  • The District administration has issued the orders to stop operation of these resorts.
  • The RTI also revealed that there are a total of 4,575 encroachments identified in SMTR.

Initiatives taken for preservation

  • The District administration has issued the orders to stop operation of these identified resorts.
  • For the eviction of encroachment in STMR, an action plan has been created and submitted to the state government.
  • An amount of Rs 1,74,15,000 has been accorded, in phase 1, for the purpose of rehabilitation of the encroachment family and encroachers.
  • During 2022-2023, 22 hectares land was cleared of invasive plant species.

Srivilliputhur-Megamalai Tiger Reserve (STMR)

  • The area of Megamalai Wildlife Sanctuary is combined with Grizzled Squirrel Wildlife Sanctuary (GSWS), established in 1988 to protect the Near threatened grizzled giant squirrel (Ratufa macroura), to form the STMR.
  • It was notified as a Tiger Reserve in 2021 and the All India Tiger Estimation was conducted for the year 2022.
  • Aim is to protect the country’s flagship species tiger.
  • It is 51st Tiger reserve of India and the fifth tiger reserve of Tamilnadu with a total area of 1016.57 sq. km.
    • Core area: 641. 86 sq. km
    • Buffer area: 70 sq. km
  • It is bordered on the southwest by the Periyar Tiger Reserve and is one of the best protected forests south of the Palghat Gap.

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Disclaimer: Copyright infringement not intended.

  • This tiger reserve also helps in protection, preservation and rejuvenation of the Vaigai river and its catchment areas.

Fauna –

  • Apart from endangered grizzled giant squirrel the park boasts the presence of Tigers, Leopards, Indian gaur and Nilgiri tahr, Chameleon, Monitor Lizard etc

Flora –

  • A mix of tropical evergreen forests and semi-evergreen forests are found.
  • There are also tracts of dry deciduous and moist mixed deciduous forests.
  • Grasslands are also present in this tiger reserve.

Must Read Article:

Tiger reserves in India




Consider the following statements about Srivilliputhur Megamalai Tiger Reserve:

1. The area was notified as a tiger reserve in the year 2021.

2. It is the fifth tiger reserve of Tamilnadu and the 51st TR of India.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

A. 1 only

B. 2 only

C. Both 1 and 2

D. Neither 1 nor 2

Answer: (C)