Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area
This National Park in the western part of the Himalayan Mountains in the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh is characterized by high alpine peaks, alpine meadows and riverine forests. The 90,540 ha property includes the upper mountain glacial and snow meltwater sources of several rivers, and the catchments of water supplies that are vital to millions of downstream users. The GHNPCA protects the monsoon-affected forests and alpine meadows of the Himalayan front ranges. It is part of the Himalaya biodiversity hotspot and includes twenty-five forest types along with a rich assemblage of fauna species, several of which are threatened. This gives the site outstanding significance for biodiversity conservation.
2020 Conservation Outlook
Current state and trend of VALUES
Overall PROTECTION and MANAGEMENT
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Description of values
Globally significant habitat
Rich assemblage of floral species
Rich assemblage of faunal species
Protection of the property is of paramount importance. The core area is naturally afforded better protection due to its remoteness. However, paucity of staff assigned to the Park leads to unrealistically large areas under just a couple of forest guards. The bulk of GHNP staff is deployed in the Ecozone, which is essentially not a part of the Park. The equipment (walki-talkies or wireless network needed as mobiles do not work in the Park), mobility and training of field staff remain a matter of concern. Forests of the Ecozone are vulnerable to annual fires. These have been quite successfully contained through an incentive-based mechanism involving local village forest development societies (VFDS). Between 2010 and 2016 a sum of INR 614,000 was distributed as incentives to 25 VFDSs in the Ecozone. However there is a need for continuous engagement between the management authority and local communities. The Management effectiveness evaluation (a global framework to evaluate the performance of protected areas) was undertaken for Great Himalayan National Park between 2006-2009 (WII, 2015) but a new management effectiveness evaluation is now needed.
|№||Organization||Brief description of Active Projects||Website|
|1||State Party of India||A number of large-scale research projects have been undertaken with the bulk of funding coming from The State Party. These include the following: • “Conservation & Cultivation of Medicinal Herbs in Sainj and Tirthan Ranges of GHNP”; • “Conservation of the Western Tragopan through wider support of the local community and Community Based Organizations”; • National workshop on “Ecotourism in Himalayas: Prospects and Challenges” - Product development and Marketing for Ecotourism; • Conservation and Cultivation of Medicinal Herbs in the Ecozone of GHNP 2007-2011; • Establishment of Botanical Garden at Sai Ropa 2008-2011. In addition, under Management effectiveness and evaluation of National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries in India (2006-2014), the National Park was also assessed for its protection and management attributes. Since 2015, the following research studies have been undertaken / are ongoing in the GHNPCA: 1. Status Survey of the Himalayan Musk deer by Zoological Survey of India, Kolkatta (2 weeks). 2. Research and habitat understanding journey in Khorlipoi to study Western Tragopan habitat in GHNP by BCCL (Times Group), New Delhi (2 weeks). 3. Bio-diversity Assessment through long term Monitoring Plots Joint survey in the selected Landscapes of Indian Himalayan Reg. incl. GHNP by Botanical Survey of India (BSI), Kolkatta; (3 years, 04/2016 to 03/2019). 4. Conservation of critical Habitats for Montane birds through Community Participation by Virat Jolli, New Delhi, (2 months June & July, 2014). 5. Biodiversity assessment, Valuation, Vulnerability assessment (Threat categorization), Conservation prioritization and conservation of protected areas (Biodiversity rich areas), sacred shrines and sacred Groves of HP, by GBPHIED, Kullu, (one year, 10/15 to 10/16). 6. Multi-disciplinary studies in floristic assessment, ecological analysis, ecosystem services, conservation and sustainable management of NPs in Western Himalaya by GBPHIED, Kullu (2 years, 5/16 to 10/18). 7. Collection of planting material of endangered medicinal plants for research purposes, by University of Horticulture & Forestay, Solan, HP (3 years, 2/17 to 2/20). 8. Non-invasive observational study on micro-flora, invertebrates, fishes, herpetofauna, birds and mammals in the protected areas, by Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun (3 years, 2016 to 2019). 9. Non-invasive observational study on three target species, viz, brown bear, black bear and common leopard in protected areas by Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun (3 years, 2016 to 2019). 10. Phylogenetic relationship and delineating the taxonomic boundaries of Saurian species in Western Himalayas by ZSI, Dehradun (one year, 4/17 to 4/18). 11. Ecology, distribution and biogeographic study of Himalayan Mammals (rodents and pikas) by National Center of Biological Sciences, GKVK, Bellary Road, Bangalore (3 years, 4/17 to 12/20). 12. In addition several departmental projects / activities related to plantation, grassland development, soil and water conservation have been undertaken in the last 3 years (GHNP Records, 2017).|
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IUCN (2013) World Heritage Nomination - IUCN Technical Evaluation, Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area (India). IUCN Gland, Switzerland.
IUCN (2014) World Heritage Nomination - IUCN Technical Evaluation, Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area (India). IUCN Gland, Switzerland. [online] Available at: <http://whc.unesco.org/document/152594>.
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Naithani, S., Singh, A. and Verma, A. (2018). Mapping of Natural Hazards and Expected Incidences in Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area, Himachal Pradesh. Indian Journal of Ecology, 45(3), pp.483-488.
Pandey, S. (2008). Linking ecodevelopment and biodiversity conservation at the Great Himalayan National Park, India: lessons learned. Biodiversity and Conservation, 17 (7), 1543–1571. doi:10.1007/s10531-008-9365-9.
Pandey, S. and Gaston, A.J. (2019). The Great Himalayan National Park, The Struggle to Save the Western Himalayas. Niyogi Books, New Delhi.
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Sahani, N. (2019). Assessment of ecotourism potentiality in GHNPCA, Himachal Pradesh, India, using remote sensing, GIS and MCDA techniques. Asia-Pacific Journal of Regional Science, pp.1-24.
Shepherd, N. (2011). The Living Mountains. Canongate Books, Edinburgh.
State Party of India (2011). Nomination of Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area as a World Heritage site.
State Party of India (2013). Nomination of Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area as a World Heritage site.
UNESCO (2019) . Decision 43 COM 7B.8 (2019) Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area (India) (N 1406rev). Available at: https://whc.unesco.org/en/soc/3897 (Accessed 1st May 2020).
UNESCO (2019a). Report on the state of conservation of the Great Himalayan National Park Conservation Area (India). State of Conservation Information System of the World Heritage Centre. [online] Available at: https://whc.unesco.org/en/soc/3897 (Accessed 1st May 2020).
WII (2015). Management Effectiveness Evaluation of National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries in India (2006-2014). Published by Wildlife Institute of India. Available at: <https://wii.gov.in/images//images/documents/mee_report_2006…;.
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World Heritage Committee (2013) Decision 37 COM 8B.11. Phnom Penh, Cambodia
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