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Similipal Tiger Reserve (Odisha)



Source: TH

 Context: Police in Odisha have discovered illegal poppy farms deep within the Similipal Tiger Reserve, burning over 1,54,980 poppy plants worth approximately over ₹3 crore.


About Poppy Plant:

Poppies, flowering plants known for their vibrant colours, belong to the Papaveraceae family. Notably, Papaver somniferum produces opium, a potent narcotic with medicinal properties like morphine. Poppies also yield edible seeds.


The opium poppy cultivation is regulated in India and can be cultivated only in such tracts as are notified by the Government. At present these tracts are confined to three States, viz. Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. Mandsaur district of Madhya Pradesh and Chittorgarh and Jhalawar Districts of Rajasthan constitute about 80% of the total area.


About Similipal Tiger Reserve (Odisha):

 Established in 1956, Similipal Tiger Reserve has been a Project Tiger site since 1973 and a biosphere reserve since 1994. It’s a part of UNESCO’s World Network of Biosphere Reserves and the Mayurbhanj Elephant Reserve. Additionally, it’s home to two indigenous tribes, the Erenga Kharias and Mankirdias, who practice traditional agriculture.