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Indian Impressions

Issue 02, 2020

Indian Impressions

India Perspectives |author

Issue 02, 2020


Warriors of nature

Maari, a 48-year-old conservationist from the state of Kerala, is lovingly addressed as the “Keeper of Silent Valley”.  Working at the Silent Valley National Park in Palakkad, Maari has lived in the forests for more than 30 years  and has made it his life’s mission to protect the region’s incredible flora and fauna.  He has been bestowed with Kerala Chief Minister’s Forest Medal this year.

Maari at the Silent Valley National Park; Dimbeshwar Das during a patrol at Kaziranga NP

Dimbeswar Das, a 54-year-old forest guard, has devoted 33 years of his life to protect the rhinos of the Kaziranga National Park, Assam. Das says he never wants to retire. He was recently given the Earth Hero Award by the Royal Bank of Scotland.

The longest running national highway in India, NH44, is now equipped with nine ‘animal underpasses’ as part of measures to mitigate infrastructure’s impact on wildlife. The highway runs through the Kanha-Pench wildlife reserve in Madhya Pradesh.

Resilient and generous

She is 95 years old but that hasn’t stopped Mizoram’s Pi  Nghakliani from donating her monthly pension to the state’s Chief Minister Relief Fund to support the battle against the Novel Coronavirus. But she hasn’t stopped at that. The generous soul is also stitching fabric  masks at home, which are being distributed among nurses and doctors in her area.

Sculpting sustainably

History is filled with skilful artists creating detailed statues, but did you know of a sculpture garden created entirely of recycled material? An idea started in his spare time by Nek Chand, a modest road inspector, the rock garden in Chandigarh now has thousands of sculptures, an open air exhibition hall, theatre trove and a miniature maze, all made out of discarded materials like wires, broken foundry and ceramic. The entire park is modelled after an imaginary kingdom replete with dancers, musicians, warriors and even astronauts!

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