A Subordinate Legislative Committee, comprising four MLAs under the chairmanship of MLA Mr. Murali Perunelli, held a meeting with stakeholders including line departments, Biodiversity Management Committee, NGOs, farmers and public, at MSSRF, Wayand, in July 2017 .
The committee sought answers for eleven questions with reference to the Biodiversity Act 2002 and Kerala Biodiversity Rules. Major questions were on implementing the Statewide Biodiversity Strategy and Action programme; activities of biodiversity management committee and the specific management plan of action for Wayanad district. The team also discussed MSSRF’s efforts into the study, documentation and conservation of biodiversity. The representatives of three groups line government departments, NGOs and community organisations as well as Panchayati Raj Institutions, briefed the committee about the gaps in implementation of the State Biodiversity rules in Kerala. Some major recommendations were need for
- awareness and capacity development of Govt. officials on integrating biodiversity values in schemes and projects.
- integration of people’s biodiversity registers in local development.
- special package for sustainable development of Wayanad district which is rooted on principles and values of biodiversity and ecosystem service.
- district level committee for technical advice and monitoring of biodiversity conservation activities.
The Kerala State Biodiversity Board (KSBB) Chairman suggested that conservation of sacred groves and mangroves be brought under the preview of KSBB. MSSRF emphasised on integration of activities of NGOs, environmentalists, Panchayat and government. departments in a formalised manner. The need for preparation and implementation of Local Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan in line with the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan, that aimed at achieving the 2020 Global Biodiversity targets, was also emphasised in the meeting.
The committee also visited the biodiversity garden of the Community Agrobiodiversity Centre of MSSRF and gained an understanding about the activities of the Centre- in conservation of (Rare Endemic and Threatened) RET plants and crop germplasms of conservation value.