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Home > Mumbai > Mumbai News > Article > Maharashtra govt okays panel to protect Lonar lake

Maharashtra govt okays panel to protect Lonar lake

Updated on: 15 January,2024 04:54 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Dipti Singh |

Scientific Advisory Board will manage research, promote scientific approach among residents and tourists towards the lake in Buldhana

Maharashtra govt okays panel to protect Lonar lake

An image of Lonar Lake captured by Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer flying on NASA’s Terra satellite taken on November 29, 2004. Pic/NASA

In a step expected to enhance research and provide a new dimension to the conservation and development of Lonar Lake in Maharashtra’s Buldhana district, the State Higher and Technical Education Department has formed a 15-member Scientific Advisory Board. The board will be funded through the University Fund of the Sant Gadgebaba Amravati University.

Created by a meteorite impact thousands of years ago, Lonar Sarovar is a significant attraction for tourists, researchers, scholars, and naturalists at both national and international levels. The board is a result of efforts that began in 2009, when local authorities, recognising potential threats to the lake, filed a writ petition in the Bombay High Court’s Nagpur Bench. The court issued orders for its preservation and conservation and in 2021, the state’s Revenue and Forest Department formed the Lonar Sarovar Development Committee. The committee, chaired by the divisional commissioner, Amravati Division, decided to form the board on February 19, 2022.

Lonar Lake
Lonar Lake

“Directives were issued to the Registrar of Sant Gadgebaba Amravati University to formulate the operational framework of the Scientific Advisory Board. The proposal prepared by the university and the High Court’s directions prompted the government to set up the board. A Government Resolution approving the formation of the 15-member board was issued on January 11,” said a senior official from the Higher and Technical Education Department.

Tasks for the Board

The primary objective of the Scientific Advisory Board includes planning and managing facilities for the scientific study of Lonar Lake. The board shall establish a statutory framework (an administrative regulatory mechanism) for research, and promote research and education through videos, conferences, and organised trips. Additionally, the board has to create awareness among visitors about the scientific processes behind current and future changes.

Regular reviews

An official said, “The board is anticipated to conduct regular meetings and reviews throughout the year. They will be responsible for reaching out to and fostering a scientific approach among residents and students, and promoting the interaction between science, technology, and society.”

The official added, “Board members shall also prepare supplementary regulations and forms for lake water research. They will provide information and advice to interested researchers, supervise researchers’ studies, recommend annual financial provisions for studies and research, and promote the need and scope of lake research.”

The board will have the authority to take legal action against unauthorised collectors of samples and other violators. It can also determine short-term and long-term goal strategies to make Lonar Lake tourist-oriented, organise international and national conferences, seminars, workshops, and visual presentations to popularise the lake and its surroundings and identify sources of pollution while assisting government and non-government organisations in preventing it.

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