A Training Workshop for NGOs/ Civil Societies was organized by the Forest Department, Manipur on Friday on the “Role of NGOs/ Civil Societies in Nature Conservation” under the aegis of Nature Learning Centre (NLC) – National Mission on Himalayan Studies (NMHS), Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change, Government of India.
The Workshop was organized with a view to bring the NGOs on board towards conservation of Forests for Water resources, Wildlife, Food security, and Prevention of Use of Plastics/Polythenes. More than 50 representatives of NGOs/Civil Societies from Senapati, Kangpokpi, Ukhrul, Imphal, Bishnupur, Thoubal, Noney, Churachandpur, Tengnoupal and Chandel Districts of Manipur actively participated in the workshop.
Kereilhouvi Angami, IFS, PCCF & HoFF, Manipur graced the Inaugural function as the Chief Guest. While addressing the gathering, he emphasized upon the need to join hands with all the stakeholders including NGOs working in the field of forests, wildlife and environment in conservation of the nature’s bounty blessed to the State of Manipur. He further added that the Nature Learning Centre aims to serve as a focal point for taking up nature awareness programmes in the State of Manipur by involving Village Chiefs/ Pradhans, students, teachers, Civil Societies, Policy Makers & Administrators for the better protection and safeguard of the natural resources of the State for posterity. D.J.N. Anand, IFS, Member Secretary (MBB) and Dr. Lokho Puni, Addl. PCCF (WPRT) attended the event as Guest of honour.
While presiding the function, Anurag Bajpai, IFS, Additional PCCF/ Administration & Planning cum Project Investigator of Nature Learning Centre emphasized that the Himalayas are a highly complex and diversified mountain system both in terms of biological and physical attributes, is considered a life support system for millions of people in uplands and much more in lowland areas of India. It acts as climate regulator for much of Asia and is globally recognized for its sacred, spiritual and philosophical values. Himalayan system being young and geo-tectonically active remains inherently unstable, fragile, and prone to natural disasters. Also, the vulnerability of this mountain chain towards human-induced disturbances is now well established. Therefore, being special and change sensitive system, and more importantly due to its life support values, the Himalaya deserves a special attention. It requires conservation and development interventions in sustainable manner, which do not ignore the imperatives of mountain specificities. This, therefore, calls for evolving new paradigms of long-term conservation and sustainable development that help restoring intricate balance between economic interests and ecological imperatives in the region. Recognizing and realizing that the Himalayas are important for Ecological Security of the country, the Government of India attaches highest priority to protect unique but highly fragile Himalayan ecosystem.
He further added that as the Mission specifically targets the Indian Himalayan Region (IHR), the jurisdiction of NMHS includes 10 Himalayan States fully (i.e., Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim, Tripura and Uttarakhand) and two states partially (i.e., hill districts of Assam and West Bengal). NLC is the first project of NMHS being implemented successfully in Manipur.
Panel discussions on “Significance of Good forest in preserving Water Resources, conserving Wildlife and ensuring Food security” and “Role of NGOs/ Civil societies in preventing use of plastics and prevention of environmental degradation” were conducted with an aim to involve the NGOs/ Civil Societies to be the campaigner to spread the awareness on issues related with conservation of nature, particularly forest, wildlife and biodiversity. Eminent speakers namely, Dr. Lokho Puni, IFS, Additional PCCF (WPRT), Shri Anurag Bajpai, IFS, Additional PCCF, Shri A. Bonbirdhwaja Singh, IFS Retd., Smt. Gaithaolu Thaimei, IFS, Manipur Zoological Garden and Shri Waikhom Roshan Singh, Assistant Environment Engineer, Manipur Pollution Control Board (MPCB) were amongst the Resource Persons of the technical sessions.
The training workshop was successfully ended with a visit of all the participants to the State of Art Nature Museum and Interpretation Centre developed by Nature Learning Centre, at Mantripukhri Forest Complex, Imphal.