Chipko Movement in India
Gaura Devi- She is the face behind this successful Environment Movement lead by a Women.
The Movement was started in the Himalayan region of Uttar Pradesh,Today’s uttarkhand. The word “chipko” refers “to stick” or “to hug”.Hugging the trees, The movement’s comes from a word meaning “embrace”where the local villagers hug the trees, and save trees by interposing their bodies between them and the contractors’ axes.
This movement became popular as “Chipko movement” across the India.Grassroot level movement, which has been initiated in the response to the need of local people of Uttarakhand.The increasing rate of depletion of forests and was resulting in destruction, arid- making the Himalayan mountain range barren.Moreover, the construction of dams, factories and roads had already led to deforestation and increasing the Concrete jungle.
This Movement was heavily supported by local women and the men who strove to save their means of subsistence and their communities.Sunderlal Bahuguna, with few volunteers and local women started this non-violent protest by clinging and hugging the trees to save them from felling.This has started the “Chipko Movement” in India.
The main aim of this environmental movement was the survival of the local tribal people whose economic activities revolved around these forests and to ensure an ecological balance .His appeal to Mrs Gandhi resulted in the green-felling ban.
The 5,000-km trans-Himalaya foot march in 1981-1983 was crucial in spreading the Chipko message.Bahuguna coined the Chipko slogan: “ecology is permanent economy”. Chandi Prasad Bhatt,one of the earliest Chipko activists, fostered local industries based on the conservation and sustainable use of forest wealth for local benefit.Dhoom Singh Negi, with Bachni Devi and many village women, first saved trees by hugging them in the “Chipko embrace”.
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