The ‘National Capital Territory of Delhi Biodiversity Council’ was constituted via notification F.No.41/CWLW/WL/Constitution of Biodiversity Council/2020/6576-99 dated 29.10.2021 with powers delegated to it by the National Biodiversity Authority (NBA) via Office Memorandum F.No.NBA/9/60/2005-SBB/UT-D dated 31.12.2019, in accordance with the provisions of the Biodiversity Act, 2002 and Biodiversity Rules, 2004.
The Council functions as an autonomous, statutory, and regulatory unit under the Forests and Wildlife department of NCT Delhi and receives separate funds.
The NCT of Delhi Biodiversity Council (DBC) consists of 5 ex-officio members and 4 expert members.
The Council is headed by professor CR Babu (Chairperson), while the Chief Wildlife Warden of NCT Delhi (CWLW) acts as its Member-Secretary (M-S). The current M-S of the Council is Shri Nisheeth Saxena.
As per the gazette notification (available in the public domain), the 5 ex-officio members are:
- NCT Delhi’s Chief Wildlife Warden - Member Secretary of the Council,
- The Principal Chief Conservator of Forest (PCCF) of NCT Delhi,
- The Delhi Development Commissioner,
- The Principal Secretary (Environment and Forest) of NCT Delhi and,
- The Principal Secretary (Urban Development) of NCT Delhi.
The 4 expert members of the Council are:
- Shri Manu Bhatnagar - Principal Director of INTACH’s Natural Heritage Division | also a member of Delhi Wetlands Authority
- Dr Ritu Singh - Project Director of INTACH’s Natural Heritage Division
- Professor Sumit Dookia - University School of Environment Management, GGS Indraprastha University
- Shri Vijay Dhasmana - ecologist and curator at the Aravalli Biodiversity Park in Gurugram;
The expert members will have a tenure of 3 years.
The Mandate of the Council is to ensure effective implementation of the Biodiversity Act, 2002, Biodiversity Rules, 2004 along with their related regulations, and any subsequent regulations of NCT of Delhi. The mandate primarily includes the following three:
- conservation of biodiversity of NCT of Delhi;
- sustainable utilisation of bio resources; and
- fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilisation of bio resources.
The Council held its 1st meeting on 14th of January 2022, to decide the agenda for the year. A follow-up meeting was held on 15th of June, 2022. The Minutes of both the meetings can be downloaded from this section.
“Our long-term goal is to preserve Delhi’s existing biodiversity and to rejuvenate areas which are now suffering due to the urban stress. - Shri Nisheeth Saxena, Member Secretary of the Council
The Backdrop: The Biodiversity Act was promulgated to meet the objectives of the UN-Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The Act envisages a decentralised 3-tier system for its implementation with the Biodiversity Management Committees at Local level, State Biodiversity Boards (Biodiversity Councils, in case of Union Territories) at State level and the National Biodiversity Authority as the apex CBD-mandate-implementation body of the country.
The functions of the Council include (but are not limited to):
- Advise the UT government on any guidelines issued by the Union government on matters relating to the conservation of biodiversity.
- Develop policy guidance for mainstreaming biodiversity and ecosystem services into the activities of various sectors.
- To regulate the access of biological resources by Indians for commercial utilisation or bio-survey and bio-utilisation for commercial utilisation within their jurisdiction. Regulation is facilitated through the mandate of prior intimation to Delhi Biodiversity Council about such access.
- To prohibit or restrict any activity which is detrimental to the objectives of the Biodiversity Act and its related regulations.
- Provide guidance and support to Biodiversity Management Committees (BMCs) for preparing People’s Biodiversity Registers (PBRs) and decentralised biodiversity management.
- To promote sustainable use of biological resources and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilisation of these.
- Development and implementation of State Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plan in alignment with the National Biodiversity Targets and the relevant Global Goals.
- Commission studies and sponsor investigation and research on biodiversity conservation, including, but not limited to, the identification of key biodiversity areas and assessment of threats to biodiversity.
- Compile a complete database of biodiversity resources in the NCT of Delhi.
- Biodiversity education, training, and capacity building.
The functions of the Biodiversity Management Committees (BMCs) include (but not limited to):
- BMCs are institutional structures constituted at every local level for promoting conservation, sustainable use and documentation of biological diversity.
- BMCs may levy charges by way of collecting fees from any person accessing the biological resource for commercial purposes from their territorial jurisdiction.
- Prepare People’s Biodiversity Register containing comprehensive information of the local flora and fauna of the locality, availability and knowledge of local biological resources, their medicinal or any other use or any other traditional knowledge associated with them.
- Preparation and implementation of Local Biodiversity Action Plan based on the PBR exercise.
- In situ conservation of biodiversity in Biodiversity Heritage Sites.
- In consultation and coordination with the Delhi Biodiversity Council, undertake identification and management of Other Effective Area-based Conservation Measures (OECMs) sites.
- BMCs function as the Environmental watch group of the local body
- Biodiversity education, training, and capacity building
Biodiversity Council in News: https://www.hindustantimes.com/cities/delhi-news/govt-forms-11-member-council-to-protect-delhi-s-biodiversity-plan-for-its-future-101642011170320.html
- Minutes of Meeting of 1st (inaugural) Meeting of the NCT of Delhi Biodiversity Council - held on 14.01.2022 at 03.00 PM through video conferencing.
- Minutes of Meeting of 2nd Meeting of Delhi Biodiversity Council - held on 15.06.2022 at 03:00 PM through video conferencing.
- Office Memorandum - Constituting 'National Capital Territory of Delhi Biodiversity Council' to implement the provisions of the Biological Diversity Act, 2002- reg.
- Delhi Gazette for Delhi Biodiversity Council
- DBC Work Circular
- ISL Video-Essay Competition
- IDB Video-Essay Competition
The entries are still open! Do spread the word and make your voices heard. Let us all contribute towards the urban biodiversity and conservation agenda. Let us strive towards a shared future for all life around us.
प्रकृति: रक्षति रक्षिता (“Prakruti Rakshati Rakshita” - Nature Protects, If She is Protected)
Dear Participants, Thank you for lending your voices of support for nature and for being a part of the NCT of Delhi Biodiversity Council's Video-Essay competition 2022.
While we are very impressed with your entries and appreciate the effort you all have put into it, we had to undertake the challenging task of limiting ourselves to identifying three winning entries along with selection of few notable mentions.
Given the overwhelming number of entries, we won't be able to provide individual feedback. However, we will upload the winning entries along with special mention entries on the website shortly.
The three Winning Entries have been awarded to (in no particular order):
Lakshya Sharma of Balvantray Mehta Vidya Bhawan - ASMA Second Shift (D.o.B.: 22-01-2008)
Khushi Seth of Tagore International School, Vasant Vihar (D.o.B.: 11-02-2009)
Vanshika Bhandari of Guru Nanak Public School (D.o.B.: 25-05-2005)
The three special mention entries (in no particular order):
Sakina Nadeem of Tagore International School, Vasant Vihar (D.o.B.: 13-08-2005)
Ishpreet Kaur of SGTB Khalsa College, University of Delhi
Jyothika Biju of CMS College, Kottayam (D.o.B.: 16-04-2001)
Hoping for an enduring partnership with you all. We wish you all the best for your future.
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