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Chandra Prakash Kala in the middle Himalayan region of India

Chandra Prakash Kala is an Indian ecologist and professor. His research interests include alpine ecology, conservation biology, indigenous knowledge systems, ethnobotany and medicinal aromatic plants. He is an assistant professor in the faculty area of Ecosystem and Environment Management at the Indian Institute of Forest Management.[1]


Early life and educationEdit

Kala was born and grew up in Sumari, a small village of Uttarakhand state in India. He studied life sciences at the Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna Garhwal University, Srinagar before completing a PhD on the ecology and conservation of the Valley of Flowers National Park at the Forest Research Institute (a deemed university), Dehradun.


He has published over 185 research papers and articles and nine books including: The Valley of Flowers: Myth and Reality,[2] Medicinal Plants of Indian Trans-Himalaya,[3] Medicinal Plants of Uttarakhand,[4] and Ecology and Conservation of Valley of Flowers National Park.[5] He writes popular articles regularly in English and Hindi. His decade long studies on the Valley of Flowers National Park laid the foundation stone to declare the Valley of Flowers a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2005.[6]

Kala has surveyed two major traditional systems of Asian therapies - Ayurveda[7][8] and the traditional Tibetan medicine.[9][10] He has studied various natural resource management practices evolved by various tribal communities in northwest,[11][12] northeast[13] and central India,[14][15][16] especially in the states of Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu-Kashmir, Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. Besides the Valley of Flowers, he surveyed many other high altitude protected areas, including Kedarnath Wild Life Sanctuary, Great Himalayan National Park, Hemis National Park, Karakorum Wildlife Sanctuary, Changthang Wildlife Sanctuary, Kibber Wildlife Sanctuary, Pin Valley National Park and Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary.[17][18] Kala also has surveyed the Alps including the only national park of Slovenia, Triglav National Park.[19]

He has served internationally recognized institutions well known for framing and implementing policies, including the National Medicinal Plants Board, the apex body of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, of India.[20]

Kala is on the editorial and advisory board of over a dozen of national and international scientific journals, including Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine, American Journal of Plant Sciences, International Journal of Ecology, Applied Ecology and Environmental Sciences, International Journal of Forestry Research, Journal of Biodiversity and African Journal of Plant Sciences.[21][22]

Award and recognitionEdit

Kala is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the first science academy of India established in 1930.[23] He has been awarded fellowships from the national and international institutions including the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development, Nepal the Ministry of Environment and Forests, the Wildlife Institute of India, and the G. B. Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development - for carrying out research on the ecology and biodiversity conservation in the various national parks, wildlife sanctuaries and biosphere reserves of the Indian Himalayas.[22][24]

He has been a visiting scholar at Pennsylvania State University, in the United States and the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia.

Kala was awarded the prestigious ICFRE Award for Excellence in the Forest Conservation (Biodiversity and Ecology).[25]



  • Nanda's Neelkanth

Short storiesEdit

  • "A Delicious Affairs"
  • "Nagrasani"
  • "The Last Wish"
  • "The Tip of the Tail"
  • "Man-eaters of Garhwal"
  • "Spurge and Snake Bite"
  • "Tapyo"
  • "My Favorite Medicine"
  • "The Prisoners of School"
  • "Riding the Best"
  • "Gaura’s Home"
  • "Aunty"
  • "A Killer in the Clouds"
  • "A Bull in the Leopard’s Monarchy"
  • "The Heavenly Leaf"
  • "The Forgotten Healers"
  • "His Confession"
  • "Seers of Pandukeshwar"
  • "Battle Between the Best"
  • "The Fragrance of Parijaat"
  • "The Childhood Friend"


  • "On His Wishes"
  • "The Bear’s Trail"
  • "A Non-vegetarian in the Holy Hills"
  • "A Job Hunter"
  • "My First Job"
  • "My Maiden Visit to Penn State"
  • "Botanist of Surguja"
  • "Ziro"
  • "A City of Biodiversity"
  • "A Week with Everest and Nanda Devi Summiteers"
  • "The Silence of Candolim"
  • "The Land of Many Shades"
  • "Om Mani Padme Hum"
  • "The Roof of the World"
  • "The Floating Heaven"
  • "A Vagrant and the ‘Queen of Mountains’"
  • "Hidden Gem of Europe"
  • "The Majesty of Mahasu"


  • "Paradise Under Fire"
  • "Taste the Himalayas"
  • "Revitalizing Sacred Grove"
  • "The Tremor of Tragedy"
  • "Mountains of Sanjeevani"
  • "Grasslands in Peril"
  • "Call from the Hills"
  • "Sacred, a Way of Life"


  • The Valley of Flowers: Myth and Reality
  • Medicinal Plants of Uttarakhand
  • Medicinal Plants of Indian Trans-Himalaya
  • Medicinal Plants and Sustainable Development
  • Biodiversity, Communities and Climate Change


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 3 December 2015. Retrieved 1 October 2016.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  2. ^ The Valley Of Flowers: Myth and Reality; Chandra Prakash Kala; International Book Distributors, New Delhi. 1 January 2004. ISBN 9788170893110. Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  3. ^ Kala, C. P. (2003). Medicinal Plants of Indian Trans-Himalaya: focus on Tibetan use of medicinal resources. Bishen Singh Mahendra Pal Singh. ISBN 9788121101806. Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  4. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash (2010). Medicinal Plants of Uttarakhand: Diversity, Livelihood and Conservation: Chandra Prakash Kala: 9788176222099: Books. ISBN 8176222097.
  5. ^ Kala, C.P.; Rawat, G. S.; Uniyal, V. K.; Wildlife Institute of India (Dehra Dūn, India) (1998). Ecology and conservation of the Valley of Flowers National Park, Garhwal Himalaya. Wildlife Institute of India. ISBN 9788185496061. Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  6. ^ Kala, C. P. (2005). "The Valley of Flowers- A Newly Declared World Heritage Site" (PDF). Current Science. 89 (6): 919–920.
  7. ^ University of Hawaii at Manoa.
  8. ^ CP Kala, HerbalGram, 70, 40-50.
  9. ^ Health traditions of Buddhist community and role of amchis in trans-Himalayan region of India. CP Kala. Current Science –Bangalore, 89 (8), 1331-1338.
  10. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash (2006). "Medicinal plants of the high altitude cold desert in India: Diversity, distribution and traditional uses". International Journal of Biodiversity Science, Ecosystems Services & Management. 2: 43–56. doi:10.1080/17451590609618098.
  11. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash (2000). "Status and conservation of rare and endangered medicinal plants in the Indian trans-Himalaya". Biological Conservation. 93 (3): 371–379. doi:10.1016/S0006-3207(99)00128-7.
  12. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash; Mathur, Vinod B. (2002). "Patterns of plant species distribution in the Trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh, India". Journal of Vegetation Science. 13 (6): 751. doi:10.1111/j.1654-1103.2002.tb02104.x.
  13. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash (2005). "Ethnomedicinal botany of the Apatani in the Eastern Himalayan region of India". Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine. 1: 11. doi:10.1186/1746-4269-1-11. PMC 1315349. PMID 16288657.
  14. ^ Journal of Soil Science and Plant Nutrition, 2013, 13(1), 201-214.
  15. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash (2015). "Forest structure and anthropogenic pressures in the Pachmarhi biosphere reserve of India". Journal of Forestry Research. 26 (4): 867–874. doi:10.1007/s11676-015-0083-3.
  16. ^ Kala, Chandra (2009). "Aboriginal uses and management of ethnobotanical species in deciduous forests of Chhattisgarh state in India". Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine. 5: 20. doi:10.1186/1746-4269-5-20. PMC 2729299. PMID 19653889.
  17. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash (2005). "Indigenous Uses, Population Density, and Conservation of Threatened Medicinal Plants in Protected Areas of the Indian Himalayas". Conservation Biology. 19 (2): 368–378. doi:10.1111/j.1523-1739.2005.00602.x.
  18. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash; Kothari, Kishor Kumar (20 November 2013). "Livestock predation by common leopard in Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary, India: human–wildlife conflicts and conservation issues" (PDF). Human–Wildlife Interactions. 7 (2): 325–333. Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 October 2014. Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  19. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash; Ratajc, Petra (2012). "High altitude biodiversity of the Alps and the Himalayas: Ethnobotany, plant distribution and conservation perspective". Biodiversity and Conservation. 21 (4): 1115. doi:10.1007/s10531-012-0246-x.
  20. ^ Kala, Chandra Prakash (2009). "Medicinal plants conservation and enterprise development". Medicinal Plants - International Journal of Phytomedicines and Related Industries. 1 (2): 79. doi:10.5958/j.0975-4261.1.2.011.
  21. ^ "Journal of Ethnobiology and Ethnomedicine | Editorial Board". Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  22. ^ a b "Chandra Prakash Kala". Retrieved 5 October 2014.
  23. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 16 May 2014. Retrieved 27 May 2014.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  24. ^ Chandra Prakash Kala; Chandra Shekhar Silori (1 January 2013). Biodiversity, Communities and Climate Change. TERI Press. pp. 329–. ISBN 978-81-7993-442-5.
  25. ^ Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education.

External linksEdit