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Curbing noise pollution Corbett’s main aim


5 January 2011

Paritosh Kimothi, Dehradun:

After ensuring the successful implementation of guidelines prohibiting noise and other types of pollution in resorts bordering the Corbett National Park during the New Year’s celebration, the State authorities are confident that they will be able to prevent such violations throughout the year to ensure that the wildlife is not disturbed by tourism activities.

During the first fortnight of December 2010, the Corbett National Park administration had issued guidelines to owners of resorts around the national park asking them to desist from organising activities which create noise, light and other types of pollution which might disturb the wildlife. There are up to 80 hotels and resorts bordering the Corbett National Park in Dhela, Marchula, Mohaan and Dhekuli areas among others. The indiscriminate recreational activities of tourists like late night parties with DJs and loud sound systems in these resorts are known to disturb the wildlife.

As per the guidelines issued by the park director, recreational parties should not be held in the resorts, resorts should not encroach on riverside areas, not use generators which create noise pollution, no bright lights should be used in the resorts to prevent light pollution, visitors should not be allowed to move near forest areas after sunset, vehicles of the guests should be parked within the compounds of the resorts and the garbage should not be dumped in the open area but should be in stead disposed off scientifically.

In order to check the observance of the guidelines, the authorities took the assistance of the State Pollution Control Board, police and district administration and checked the activities held in resorts on Christmas night. It was found that 10 resorts violated the guidelines and generated noise much above the permissible level due to which the owners were penalised.

The national park administration wrote letters to all the resort owners warning them that action would be taken against them under the Environment Protection Act if they create noise pollution or violate other guidelines issued by the authorities.

According to the Uttarakhand Forest and Environment Advisory Committee vice chairman Anil Baluni, following the successful implementation of the guidelines during the New Year celebrations, the authorities will now attempt to ensure that the guidelines are observed by the resort owners throughout the year and not only on special occasions so that the wildlife is not adversely affected by the tourism activities.