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Monday, June 15, 2015

Conservation Award to Udalguri tea gardens

Bhootiachang and Paneri tea gardens of Udalguri district under MacLeod Russel India have been awarded 'Elephants Conservation Award 2014' recently at a ceremony at Nonai Forest Range Office on June 13. The award was launched last year by Elephants on the Line,a programme organized by a few elephant loving people and officials of USA,Bhutan and India last year for the conservation of wild elephants and to work jointly for mitigation of man-elephant conflict in Udalguri villages district bordering Bhutan. The one year programme was supported by North Carolina State University,USA in association with Udalguri administration and Dhansiri Forest Division,Udalguri. The programme has promoted solving of India-Bhutan trans border conservation issues.It also opened up windows of cooperation among civil,forest and people of both the countries since July 2014. The award ceremony which was held at Nonai Forest Range Office was conducted by EOL Assam coordinator J.K.Das. Sadhana Hojai,Deputy Commissioner presented the 'Elephant Conservation Award 2014' to AK Sing,Senior Manager of Bhootiachang tea garden while noted journalist and Managing Editor of DY365 Pranay Bordoloi (Also the Hony.Member of Assam Wildlife Board) presented the award to Wasim Haque of Paneri tea garden.
DC Hojai expressed her satisfaction at the good works done by the tea gardens.She also appealed all the tea gardens of the district to work hard to mitigate HEC in Udalguri and to plant as much as trees in vacant lands to prevent further encroachment.Pranoy Bordoloi assured EOL members all possible help and cooperation for the conservation of flora and fauna of Assam. He requested EOL for its expansion on all Assam level. AK Sing ,Senior Manager of Bhootiachang tea garden while thanking EOL members,district administration and forest department for the award assured that their tea gardens would do more good works for the conservation and welfare of both wild elephants and villagers. On the issue he assured to sponsor two domestic Kunki elephant to be deployed in HEC villages.
The award presentation ceremony was attended by several distinguished people including- GN Adhikari, DFO,Dhansiri Forest Division,Udalguri;Mubina Akhtar, EOL Core Member and Hony.Member of Assam Wildlife Board; Dipen Boro,EOL Core Member and Central Vice President,ABSU etc.It needs mentioning that a two days workshop on GPS/GIS/RS was also arranged by Elephants on the Line for EOL and forest officials which was conducted by Pranjit Sarma and Bipul Das of Aranyak, Assam on June 12 and 13 at Nonai Forest Range Office.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Indo-Bhutan border:World Environment Day was observed in various places of Bhergaon sub-division in Udalguri district on June 5 with variety of programmes. In Bornadi Wildlife Sanctuary near Indo-Bhutan border,the day was celebrated with a district level workshop on identification of local plants and habitat. It was organised jointly by “Elephants on the Line” and forest staff of Bornadi Wildlife Sanctuary. Dr.Pranjal Bezbarua conducted the day long workshop which was inaugurated by wildlife activist Jayanta Kumar Das at 10 am.Twenty members of EOL and five forest officials of Bornadi Wildlife Sanctuary participated in the programme.NC Thakuria,Range Officer,Bornadi WLS attended it as the guest of honour. Speaking on the occasion the Range Officer spoke on severe human elephant conflict with special reference to Udalguri and Bhutan where more than sixty people and twenty eight wild elephants have died in last three years. According to him herds of wild elephants come down to Udalguri villages adjunct to Bhutan hills not because of food or water but the safety of the new born babies, as the new born babies can not walk on muddy and sleepery hilly lands in Bhutan. He requested all to join hands to minimize HEC casualities in the district by creating awareness among people.
Dipen Boro,central vice president of ABSU and Buddhi Ram Boro,former advisor of ABSU district committee also attended the workshop as invited guests. The sanctuary authority took all the participants inside the sanctuary for a technical session.The participants planted a few saplings in the sanctuary on the occasion of WED.
WE Day was also observed centrally at Khalingduar Reserve Forest neat Bhutan border. Dhansiri Forest Division,Udalguri organized the programme at Nonai Range Office. Man-elephant conflict being the burning issue in the district,massive plantation programme specially with elephant fodder species were planted of the periphery of Khalingduar Reserve Forest. As per traditional system, a worship to wild elephants was organized inside the forest before the plantation programme. Sadhana Hojai,DC,Udalguri; Suresh Tanti,MCLA,BTC; GN Adhikari, DFO,Udalguri;SDO (C) and SDPO,Bhergaon sub-division; army officers of Hatigarh army camp; SSB officers of 23 and 37 BN; tea garden managers of Bhutiachang, Nonaipara and Borongajuli were among those attended the programme beside students and villagers of the locality. At Kalaigaon DN Hazarika ,Circle Officer,Kalaigaon Revenue Circle organized WED celebration with day long programme.A mini garden named -“Mor Kon Bagicha” was inaugurated by Utpal Sarma.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Nature lovers of US-Bhutan-India working for mitigation of "Man-elephant Conflict" in Assam

Udalguri district bordering Bhutan has been badly hit by human - elephant conflict (HEC) since last five years. As per latest data 13 people and 8 wild elephants in 2012, 19 people and 10 wild elephants in 2013 and 22 people and 7 wild elephants have been killed in Udalguri district alone which has drawn world wide attention as the highest HEC zone in Asia. The district shares 53 KM international border with Bhutan and 14 interstate border with Arunachal Pradesh. Most of the wild herds in big herds generally come down from Bhutan hills to plains of Udalguri following 12/14 age old elephant corridors since time immemorial. Girindra Adhikari, DFO,Dhansiri Forest Division,Udalguri confirms this. Wild elephants start visiting Indo-Bhutan trans boundary villages in April/May and return back to Bhutan hills in November/December every year. People call this seasonal migration.
Unfortunately due to massive deforestation and encroachment on forest lands, most the traditional elephant corridors have been blocked. Establishment of Army or SSB camps on such corridors badly effected elephants movement in the district. Electrocution,food poisoning, and unscientific tea garden ditches are some of the major causes of elephants deaths. On the other hand most of the human casuality occurred due to ignorance and illiteracy. People try to chase away hungry and thirsty wild elephants during night in order to protect their crops and houses.But with no training and equipments they just fall prey to some loner wild elephants.
A few nature loving people of Assam,USA and Bhutan successfully organized an international level conservation program known as “Elephants on the Line: (EOL) on July 24 in 2014.The program have been supported by Nth Carolina State University, USA; USFWS, Asian Elephant Support,Riddles Elephant and Wildlife Sanctuary; Dhansiri Forest Division, Udalguri and Udalguri district administration. Since then officials and members of the EOL have been giving training villagers living in the HEC villages near India-Bhutan border. Colorful posters and brochures in different languages have been distributed telling dos and don'ts.Awareness meetings have been organized so as to create awareness among village people. EOL workers have been provided with powerful solar torch lights,GPS, binoculars, laptops, cameras, night vision monocular etc for tracking the movements of the wild elephants. The program serves as a guide for significant community based conservation projects, involving education, training, HEC prevention as short term goals while afforestation,fringe population welfare,creation of elephant refuges and reinstating corridors for safe elephant movements remain some of the long term initiatives. Wild elephants mostly take refuge in Paneri, Bhootiachang, Hatigarh and Majuli tea gardens in the district during their seasonal migration to Assam district. In the meantime Bhootiachang and Paneri tea gardens under MclLeod Russel Co and Nonaipara tea garden under Goodricke Co have taken up a few elephant friendly activities in their respective gardens by arranging drinking water for wild elephants. Recently a team of conservation activists and journalists namely- Jayanta Kumar Das, Assam EOL Coordinator; Mubina Akhtar, Member Assam Wildlife Board and Core member EOL;Dipen Boro, Vice President ABSU and Core Member EOL; Samudra Gupta Kashyap of Indian Express and Bijay Sankar Bora of The Tribune visited HEC areas on May 5 and May 6. They had discussion with DC and DFO of Udalguri on May 5. They had another meeting with DFO,Udalguri and other forest officials at Nonai Range Office at 11 AM on May 6.They had another meeting with Paran Das,Senior Manager,Nonaipara tea garden and Abid Rahman,Senior Manager,Borongajuli tea garden at Nonaipara tea garden to discuss role of tea gardens in mitigating HEC and to arrange temporary shelter for wild elephants to minimize deaths of human as well as wild elephants in the district.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Wild elephants kill 4 in Udalguri.Baby elephant electrocuted.

Man-elephant conflict has taken a serious turn in Udalguri district following deaths of four more persons at Coramore near India-Bhutan border last night on July 14. One wild elephant has also been found dead at Gitibari near Paneri.So far 10 people have been killed by wild elephants this year in the district. According to information a wild elephant of a herd killed Dhira Digol (32),son of late Bhabani Digol, Simon Digol (40),son of Haridas Digol, Victor Ekka (30) son of Thomas Ekka at Coramore last night while trying to chase away wild elephants. On the otherhand one Budhin Mura (45) son of Bijoy Mura was also killed last night by the same wild elephant at Bongurum just one km away. All the persons died on spot.In another incident,one baby wild elephant died at Gitibari near Paneri due to electrocution. Nature loving people of Udalguri urge CCF,BTC immediately to take steps to protect lives and property of the villagers and to ensure safety of wild elephants.In the mean time Sadhana Hojai,Deputy Commissioner,Udalguri has taken initiative to mitigate “Man-elephant conflict” in the district in cooperation with Bhutan forest officials and elephant experts of India and Assam.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Kalaigaon child scientists topped district science competition at Udalguri

Child scientists of Kalaigaon block have won five of the six awards in the district level science based competition held at Udalguri HSS on May 29. The competition was organized by Udalguri district administration under the aegis of Assam Science Technology & Environment Council (ASTEC). Sadhana Hojai,Deputy Commissioner, Udalguri formally inaugurated the district level science competition at 11 am. On the occasion she appreciated the child scientists of the district for showing innovative talents in the field of science and technology. She also announced that she would personally sponsor five child scientists for a science exposure tour to Kolkata which was applauded by all present. Dibakor Doley,ADC,Udalguri attending the programme as the distinguished guest expressed pleasure to meet child scientists. He told students that all the top inventors of the world had never been a scientist in their early life but had dedication and innovative ideas.
It needs mention that Aryabhatta Science Centre of six blocks in the district namely- Kalaigaon, Khoirabari, Bhergaon,Udalguri,Rowta and Mazbat had organised block level science based- extempore speech,poster drawing and model competitions last months in respective blocks and first three winners in each category took part in the district level competition. In the science based model competition Dolly Saharia and Akashi Deka of Kalaigaon Girls HS (Kalaigaon block) won first prize while Monpreet Kaur and Henrita Boro of Arunodoi Academy,Tangla (Kalaigaon Block) won second prize. In the science based poster drawing Seema Ujir of Sacred Heart School (Rowta block) won first while Himanta Biswa Deka of Arunodoi Academy,Tangla (Kalaigaon block) won second prize. In the science based extempore speech competition Rimjim Chaliha of Arunodoi Academy,Tangla and Swapna Baroi of Bright Life English HS (both Kalaigaon block) won forst and second prizes respectively. All the winners will take part in the state level Aryabhatta Science Centre competition to be organised by ASTEC at Srimanta Sankardeb Kala Khetra on July 9 and 10. Noted artist of Assam Rabi Ram Brahma conducted the science based poster drawing competition while senior lecturers -Dr, Rohit Daimary, Jadabendra Roy and Naba Kumar Baishya of Udalguri college conducted the science model competition. Photo shows Sadhana Hojai,DC and Dibakor Doley,ADC Udalguri talking to child scientists at Udalguri HSS on May 29.

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Tangla students shine in HS & HSLC

The students of Tangla have shown excellence in recently declared HS and HSLC examinations. Hridoijyoti Ojah and Nishamoni Sarma of National Pioneer Jr.College,Tangla have secured 5th and 9th position in the HS (commerce stream) bringing glory to not only Tangla but to Udalguri district. Total 332 students appeared in Arts and Commerce stream. 87 passed in first division ( 8 students with distinction marks, 24 with star marks and 185 with letter marks); 122 in second division and 111 in third division.The success percentage was 99 percent. Students of Arunodoi Academy Junior Science College,Tangla also performed very well in science stream with hundred percent success. Out of 87 students appeared,76 passed in first division ( 5 students with star marks) and 11 in second division with none in third division. Punkha Narzary topped the successful candidates with 80 percent marks.
In HSLC examination students of Arunodoi Academy, Tangla showed excellent result with hundred percent success. Out of 50 students appeared 28 passed in first division ( 5 with distinction marks,7 with star marks ); 22 in second division and none in third division. Tangla English Medium High School students performed very well in HSLC examination this year too with 99 percent success. Out of 52 appeared, 30 passed in first division ( three with distinction marks and 8 with star marks),20 in second division and 1 in third division. Syad Parvizul Islam,Principal,National Pioneer Jr.College ;Pranab Jyoti Das, Principal, Arunodoi Academy Junior Science College; Napoleon Daimary,Principal of Arunodoi Academy HS and Kandeswar Deka,Principal of Tangla English Medium HS expressed happiness saying that the good result of Tangla students was significant in the sense that the district had been infested heavily with frequent bandhs, extremist activities etc.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Golondi river beach festival concludes in Udalguri

Amidst soaring enthusiasm people of Udalguri celebrated the Udalguri beach festival with fun, frolic and fanfare. The main attractions being the beach volleyball event and the sand castle making contest apart from a host of traditional Bodo games and events that flooded the Golandi river bed. Drawn from various schools of Udalguri 28 boys’ teams and 12 girl’s teams participated in the glamorous beach volleyball event. In the boys event Kathalguri village beat Udalguri college by 12-21, 21-16, 15-11 in the final while Udalguri Higher Secondary School won the bronze. In the girls section Auxilium College Udalguri won gold and bronze while Kathalguri village women won the bronze. Even more attractive was the sand castle making competition in which more than hundred children converged the Golandi into a sea, making the most unbelievable edifices varying from forts, palaces, cartoons, fancy cars, Temples, Churches, Mosques and displaying boundless patriotism with their endless imagination setting paradigm sure enough to put adults to bitter shame, wherein there was a clear writing on the walls for society to live in goodwill and harmony. Sand Castle making competition was in three categories. In the first category aged 5 -10 yrs, the second category 11- 20 yrs. In the third category was a befitting reminder of the fact that men in Olive Green care for specially abled children in which the gold went to Pinky Daimari silver to Babul Daimari and bronze to Sorita Daimari.
Speaking on the occasion the chief guest Rihon Daimari, MLA applauded the efforts made by the Indian Army Red Horns Division in bringing such creative and constructive entertainment to Udalguri and exerted the people to make full use of such opportunities provided by the Army. The inquisitiveness displayed by people of all communities in a sport unheard of earlier to them augurs well for community development that entertainment can be a melting pot for all cultures and for a blissful personality development. With merriment galore the Indian Army Unit of Red Horns Division in the district in collaboration with NGOs of Udalguri like ADWR and YPM Media proved that the calm that prevailed in Udalguri while the rest of BTAD was burning in ethnic strife was no fluke and as Assam awaits the monsoon to set in to provide relief to parched lands.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Assam Sahitya Sabha fails to maintain its glory: former president

“ Assam Sahitya Sabha has lost its glorious tradition of past and is now divided into several lobbies”. So said Academy Award winner writer and former president of Asom Sahitya Sabha Dr.Lakhinandan Borah at a felicitation programme at Kalaigaon on May 11. Expressing his displeasure over the present controversial activities of Sabha,Dr.Borah said that lobbying would never help constructive activities of Sabha. He even remarked that Assamese literature would florish even without Sabha. Addressing the felicitation programme which was also attended by writer cum civil service officer Thaneswar Malakar and writer cum businessman Gopal Jalan. Dr.Bora was in all praise for the people of Udalguri district for maintaining peace and communal harmony during the period when all the other three districts of BTAD namely-Kakrajhar,Chirang and Baksa had been burning causing deaths of more than fifty people including women and children. He requested media persons to expose positive picture of the rural villages. According to him new generation writers have shown less consiste
ncy and study in them. Thaneswar Malakar,who had served three years term in Udalguri as Deputy Commissioner, while addressing remarked that Udalguri had been his first love in his life and he would do all possible for the welfare of its people. Gopal Jalan also spoke on the occasion saying that he had negative thought about Satras of Assam. But after visiting two Satras in Udalguri district-namely Borongajuli Satra and Harisinga Satra, his thoughts had changed completely. He said Satras in Udalguri had been managed and supported by tribal people.Dandi Kumar Boro and social worker Gopal Borah also spoke a few words on the occasion. It needs mention that three social organisations of Kalaigaon namely- Kendukalai, Kalaigaon Press Club and Durgat Kalyan Nyas felicitated Dr. Lakhinandan Borah,Thaneswar Malakar and Gopal Jalan at Kendukolai Bhawan on May 11 at 4 pm. Senior journalist Jayanta Kumar Das anchored the proceeding while Kamal Prasad Sarma offered vote of thanks at the end.

Friday, May 9, 2014

ABSU AMSU join hands for peace in Udalguri ,BTAD

When other three districts in BTAD, namely- Kokrajhar,Chirang and Baksa had been hit hard due to post poll violence leading to deaths of nearly fifty innocent people including children and women belonging to religious minority community, the other BTAD district Udalguri remained peaceful without a single incident. Now the secret of peace has been revealed by ABSU and AMSU leaders of Udalguri district to a visiting media team on May 8 at Udalguri. The joint timely action taken by ABSU and AMSU in association with the district administration could very well prevented more violence and killing in the district. Nerkhang Khaklary, president,ABSU,Udalguri unit told media team at their office that all people irrespective of caste and community want to leave in peace. Only a few interested people just try to misguide common people for their own interest. Referring to recent violence in BTAD he remarked that it was a planned conspiracy and time was chosen accordingly. “The recent violence in BTAD was never communal but a well planned political conspiracy” he said. Dipen Boro,Advisor of the district ABSU adding his personal experience,narrated the story of a small incident at Bhakatpara near Darrang district on May 3 last.He said that a gaonbura belonging to Bodo community was about to flee his house fearing attack of other community people. Dipen proudly mentioned that it was AMSU district president who had informed him the matter about to ignite large scale violence in the district. District level joint ABSU and AMSU meeting was arranged immediately on May 4 and the matter was buried on the spot while AMSU had taken the responsibility of protecting the neighbouring Bodo villages. Dipen Boro also mentioned that whenever there was rumour,leaders of both the organisation used to arrange spot visit to the areas to settle the matter. Thankfully mentioned the contribution of SS Meekashi Sundaram and Thaneswar Malakar previous DCs ; Anand Prakash Tiwari and Debojit Deuri, previous SPs of Udalguri,Boro said that they had planted the trees of friendship and peace in the district since 2009. Supporting views of ABSU, Md.Hedayatullah,President of AMSU,Udalguri district unit told visiting media team at Udalguri that joint activities of both ABSU and AMSU could successfully prevented violence in both Darrang and Udalguri district and situation was under their control. He too thanked district administration of Udalguri for timely intervening small incidents for peace. Revealing their strategies to combat violence and spreading of rumour,ABSU and AMSU leaders said that arrangement of immediate joint visit to the source of rumour very well prevented further spreading of rumour. Moreover both the organisations had decided to suspend visits one community member to others villages without informing own local units of either ABSU or AMSU till normalcy returns to BTAD. Sadhana Hojai,Deputy Commissioner of the district while briefing the visiting media on prevailing law and order in the district remarked that people must not venture out after dusk in vulnurable villages.She also requested people not to follow TV breaking news. She said that five companies of para military forces including two company of BSF,one SSB and two CRPF had been deployed in vulnerable areas.The district administration has arranged eleven fix police picket at eleven vulnerable villages in the district