'Educate masses, officials on Biodiversity Act'

The authorities working in the areas of conservation and preserving of forests should be aware of the Biodiversity Act 2002 which lay provision for  protection of rich biodiversity, said Leo Saldanha, coordinator for Environment Support Group.

He was speaking at a workshop on Conservation of Biological Diversity and Law, organised at Aranya Bhavan here on Monday and said the department of environment and forests have responsibilities to develop strategies, plans, programmes for conservation and wise use of biological resources, issue directive to state governments to protect biodiversity rich areas.

Impact of projects

The departments could assess the impact of projects that have an adverse effect on biodiversity conservation and use and regulate, manage and control use and release of genetically modified organisms in relation to human health and environment.

It is also important to protect knowledge of local communities associated with biodiversity and rehabilitate threatened species, he said.

The Biodiversity Act is enacted in conformance with Convention of Biologicals Diversity, 1992. It governs all aspects relating to management, conservation, access and use of biodiversity in India. The Act became effective in 2004 and also offences under the Act are tried under criminal law.

In her address, Bhargavi Rao of ESG said the Regulation of Use and Access to Biodiversity mandates for prior permission from National Biodiversity Authority for obtaining any biological resource or knowledge associated with it for research, commercial utilisation and bio survey, if it involved a a foreign national, a citizen of India, who is non-resident and corporate organisations.


A prior approval is also necessary for any intellectual property right, in or outside India, if the invention is based on any research or information obtained on a biological resource obtained from India.

While, the local people from the community of area, growers and cultivators of biodiversity and Vaids and Hakims practicing indigenous medicine.

If the product is patented, permission of the National Biodiversity Authority is required before the sealing of patent by Patent Authority

Heritage sites

The NBA has the powers to declare areas of biodiversity importance as biodiversity heritage sites in consultation with locals bodies and frame rules for management of these sites, she added.

Assistant Conservation of Forest Gopinath, Thammaiah, RFOs from Mysore and Mandya were present.

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