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Gandhamardan Hill Range : Biodiversity Heritage Site

Gandhamardan Hill Range : Biodiversity Heritage Site

The state government of Odisha declared the Gandhamardan Hill Range in Bargarh and Balangir district as a Biodiversity Heritage Site (BHS).

  • The Gandhamardan hill (Gandhamardan Reserve Forest) spreads in Bargarh and Balangir districts in Odisha.
  • This ecologically fragile ecosystem is rich in floral and faunal diversity and is protected under the Odisha Biodiversity Rules – 2012.
  • The hill range has a diverse socio-economic, ecological and biological significance for the people of Odisha.
  • This hill consists of medicinal plants, the hill system is considered the ‘Ayurvedic paradise’ of Odisha.
  • The hills have 2 historical monuments (hill shrines) which are major pilgrimage sites of Odisha.
  • Nrusinghanath temple is located on the northern slope.
  • Harishankar temple on the southern side.
  • In his chronicles, Hiuen Tsangdescribed the hill shrine as a Buddhist heritage site named

Biodiversity heritage sites:

  • These are well-defined areas that are unique, ecologically fragile ecosystems with a high diversity of wild and domesticated species, the presence of rare and threatened species, and keystone species.