Parasnath Hill (or, Sammed Shikhar): Sanctity of Sacred Jain religious site will be maintained
Attribution: Shubham Jain, CC BY-SA 4.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

After meeting with representatives of Jain Community, the Minister has said that the Government is committed to maintain the sanctity of Sammed Shikhar ji Parvat Kshetra as a sacred Jain religious place.  

The Eco Sensitive Zone (ESZ) was notified by the Government of India in consultation with the State Government of Jharkhand in 2019 under the provisions of Environment (Protection) Act, 1986.  

ESZ notification does not intend to promote uncontrolled tourism, and definitely not promote all kinds of development activities within a Sanctuary boundary. It aims to restrict or regulate activities surrounding the sanctuary outside its boundary.  

Sammed Shikhar falls in the eco-sensitive zone of Parasnath Wildlife Sanctuary and Topchanchi Wildlife Sanctuary. The Management Plan of the Parasnath Wildlife Sanctuary has ample provisions that prohibit the activities that have been said to be adversely affecting the sentiments of Jain Community.

There is a list of prohibited activities that can’t take place in and around the designated eco-sensitive area. Restrictions will be followed in letter and spirit.  

Consequent to the meeting, the state government is directed to strictly enforce the ban on the sale and consumption of liquor and non-vegetarian food items on Parasnath hill and implement provisions of management plan. Further, implementation of provisions of Clause 3 of the Eco Sensitive Zone (ESZ) notification is stayed including all Tourism and Eco-Tourism activities. A Monitoring Committee comprising of two members from the Jain community and one member from the local Tribal community as Permanent Invitees is to be constituted for involvement and oversight by important stakeholders.

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