The monograph examines the recommendations of the Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel on making the Western Ghats eco sensitive zones in the light of Indian environment laws. The Indian environment debate of conservation and protection of biodiversity has been sustained by post colonial response that has two major opposing strands. The first is the cultural opposition characterised by the indigenous people of their homestead, religious and livelihood rights. The second is the opposition within the political and legal framework that has taken the judicial and policy making route. Both these strands have richly contributed to the environmental policy that India has today. In this context, an expert panel on considering Western Ghats as eco sensitive zone observes the cultural and natural history of the biodiversity hotspot through the lens of planning and regulation. This brings out the tension between the natural habitat perspective of the people, flora and fauna of the forests and the regulatory band that the state imposes on it from outside. Understanding the conflict is the beginning of a sensitive policy toward incorporating forests as spaces of natural and cultural importance.
Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s):
Francis Kuriakose, Deepa Kylasam Iyer