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Chilika Development Authority


Prestigious Indira Gandhi Paryavaran Award

Chilika Development Authority is conferred with the prestigious Indira Gandhi Paryavaran Award – 2002 for the outstanding contribution by way of successful conservation and restoration of the eco-system of Chilika lagoon. The Selection Committee headed by His Excellency Vice-President of India announced this on 17th July, 2004 at New Delhi. The Indira Gandhi Paryavaran Puruskar is constituted by the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India and every year two prizes i.e., one to an individual and one to an institution is given for outstanding contribution in the field of environmental conservation. This award carries a cash prize of Rs. 5.00 lakhs, one Trophy & a Citation. Chilika Development Authority is the first organisation from Odisha to get this prestigious award. Chilika Development Authority also begged the prestigious Ramsar Wetland Conservation Award -2002 for the outstanding contribution in the successful restoration of the Chilika lagoon.
The Chilika Development Authority was established in 1992 to address the serious degradation problem due to multi-dimensional ecological and anthropogenic pressures in the Chilika lake in Odisha which is the largest lagoon on the east coast of India. The lagoon is a hotspot of bio-diversity that shelters a number of endangered species and its rich fishery resources sustain the livelihood of fisher folk and people living in the lagoon catchment area.

In 1993, changes in the ecological character of the lake brought about mainly by siltation and choking of the sea water inlet, resulted inter alia, in the proliferation of invasive fresh water species, decrease in fish productivity and an overall loss of biodiversity leading to the Chilika lagoon being added to the list of Ramsar sites in danger (the Montreux Record).

 The Chilika Development Authority carried out eco-restoration work of the lagoon based on the scientific studies and the principle of integrated management, with major emphasis on the participation of the local community as well as capacity building. the exemplary work done by the Chilika Development Authority not only restored the ecological characteristic of the wetland but also resulted in a spectacular increase in fish catches and other socio-economic benefits to the local population leading to marked improvement in their livelihood.

The Indira Gandhi Paryavaran Puraskar, 2002 (Organisation category) is awarded to the Chilika Development Authority for their significant contribution in restoration and conservation of the Chilika lagoon.

The services of Shri Ajit Patnaik, Chief Executive Officer of the Chilika Development Authority under whose guidance the Authority has made this exemplary achievement, are specially recognized.
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