The Chitwan park is situated in south central Nepal, covering 932 km2in the subtropical lowlands of the inner Terai. The area comprising the Tikauli forest-from Rapti river to the foothills of the Mahabharat-extending over an area of 175 km2 was declared Mahendra Mriga Kunj (Mahendra Deer Park) by the late King Mahendra in 1959. In 1963, the area south of Rapti River was demarcated as a rhinoceros sanctuary. The area was gazetted as the country's first national park in 1973, recognizing its unique ecosystems of international significance. UNESCO declared RCNP a World Heritage Site in 1984,In 1996 an area of 750 km2 surrounding the park was declared a buffer zone, which consists of forests and private lands including cultivated lands. The park and the local people jointly initiate community development activities and manage natural resources in the buffer zone. Government of Nepal has made provision of to provide 30-50 percent of the park revenue for community development and natural resource management in the buffer zone.