The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change and the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) rolled out the ‘Gaj Yatra’ from Tura, the principal town of Garo Hills.
About Gaj Yatra:
- ’Gaj Yatra’, a “journey celebrating India’s national heritage animal”, aims at securing 100 elephant corridors across India. Four of these are in Meghalaya,including the Siju-Rewak corridor that some 1,000 elephants use to travel between the Balpakram and Nokrek National Parks in the State.
- The campaign has aptly been launched in the Garo Hills, where the people have created community forests for human-elephant harmony and conservation of animals such as hoolock gibbon.
Balpakram National Park:
- Located in the South Garo Hills district of the state of Meghalaya. Balpakram is a hotspot of biodiversity in Meghalaya.
- The park is the home of the Barking deer and the Golden cat.
- The rare medicinal herb called ‘Dikges’ which grows here abundantly gets its fair share in the fame as well.
- Sanjeevani, locally known as sampanngi, is the magical medicinal plant also found in the park.
Nokrek National Park
- Nokrek National Park, the core area of Nokrek Biosphere Reserve, is a national park located approximately 2 km from Tura Peak in West Garo Hills district of Meghalaya, India.
- UNESCO added this National park to its list of Biosphere Reserves.
- Nokrek has a remnant population of the Red panda that has generated curiosity across the world.
- Nokrek is also an Important Bird Area.
- The mother germoplasm of Citrus indica(locally known as Memang Narang) have been discovered by science researchers within Nokrek Range. This discovery led to the establishment of the National Citrus Gene Sanctuary-cum-Biosphere Reserve covering an area of forty-seven square kilometres.
- The area is noted for its wild varieties of citrus fruits that provide a gene-pool for commercially produced citrus.
- All important rivers and streams of the Garo Hills region rise from the Nokrek Range, of which the river Simsang, known as Someshwari when it emerges into Bangladesh at Baghmara, is the most prominent.
Source:TH & Wiki