Environment Ministry included Neelakurinji in the list of protected plants

Tags: Environment National News

Neelakurinji in the list of protected plantsThe Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF) has listed Neelakurinji (Strobilanthes kunthiana) in the list of protected plants under Schedule III of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972.

An overview of the news

  • According to the Environment Ministry, those who uproot or destroy the plant will be fined Rs 25,000 and imprisoned for three years.

  • Cultivation and possession of this plant is not allowed.

  • Neelakurinji has been included in the list after the Center expanded the earlier protected list of six plant species to 19.

About Neelakurunji

  • Neelakurinji is a tropical plant species and is native to the shola forests in the Western Ghats.

  • It is also found in Shevaroy Hills in the Eastern Ghats, Annamalai Hills in Kerala and Sanduru Hills in Karnataka.

  • It grows on mountain slopes at an altitude of 1300 to 2400 meters to a height of 30 to 60 cm.

  • The flowers of Neelakurinji are violet-blue in colour and bloom once in 12 years. The flower has no scent or any medicinal value.

  • Because of these flowers, the Nilgiri hills at the southern end of the Western Ghats are called the Blue Mountains.

  • It is one of the rarest plant species that grows in the Western Ghats and does not grow in any other part of the world.

  • It is classified as an endangered species.

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