The leader of the Chipko movement, Sunderlal Bahuguna does not need any introduction today. Sundar Lal, born on Jan 9, 1927, Uttarakhand, is known as a famous environmentalist. Today (March 26) is the 45th anniversary of the Chipko movement, which is one of the biggest movements after independence with the intention to protect environment.
The greatest virtue of this non-violent movement was that it was led by women. That’s why Google honoured them today by creating a doodle. Today’s ‘Google Doodle’ marks the 45th anniversary of the forest conservation initiative called the Chipko Movement.
There is a colorful picture designed in the doodle in which a group of women are standing around a tree which is presenting their fight against deforestation, which was the main objective of the Chipko movement.
The Chipko movement was started in 1973 under the leadership of well-known environmentalist Sunderlal Bahuguna, in the forested area of Uttar Pradesh (present day Uttarakhand), in which the movement against the cutting of trees was carried out.
When Women were the main face of protest
The effect of this non-violent movement in Chamoli district of present-day Uttarakhand was later spread throughout North India. In this movement, ‘Chipko’ was meant to wrap the trees through the villagers, so that they gathered to prevent the harvesting of trees.
The main objective of the Chipko movement was to prevent the indiscriminate harvesting of trees in the name of making factory, roads and dams, to save nature.
The most important thing about the Chipko movement was that the involvement of rural women was on a large scale.
The movement that started under the leadership of local women was spread by Chandi Prasad Bhatt and his NGO. Sunderlal Bahuguna gave direction to this movement and urged the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi to give orders to stop the cutting of trees. The result was positive and cutting of trees was banned. Following the success of the movement it was movement spread to other parts of the country. Dhoom Singh Negi, Balni Devi, Gaura Devi and Sudesh Devi were the key figures associated with this movement.
On, on this special day, some special things related to the life of the Sundar Lal Bahuguna, who was awarded Padma Vibhushan in 2009.
He started social work at young age.
He was just 14 years old when he started to participate in social activities. . Did you know that he also fought against untouchability like Gandhi?
Tree protection is the goal
Sunderlal Bahuguna has an important role in conserving trees. In 1971, Sunder lal Bahuguna fasted for sixteen days for protection of trees. Due to the Chipko movement, he became famous all over the world in the name of Vrikshmittra (Friends of Trees).
Women hugged the trees
Under this movement, the women hugged the trees and did not move from their places. After this, they caught the attention of the government. Cutting of trees were banned for 15 years in the Himalayan forests of the country.
Opposing Tehri Dam construction
To save the environment, Sunder Lal Bahuguna had opposed the Tehri Dam in 1990. He was against the dam. He said that a dam with capacity of more than 100 MW should not be constructed.
Sunderlal Bahuguna has written the following books –
Dharti Ki Pukar
Ecology Is Permanent Economy
Bhoo Prayog Mei Buniyadi Parivartan Ki Or
India’s Environment – Myth and Reality
He has received the following awards –
Jamnalal Bajaj Award (1986)
Right Livelihood Award (1987)
Padma Vibhushan (2009)
He refused to take the Nobel Peace Prize and Padma Shri award. (Source Here)
No Doubt, Sunderlal Bahuguna Is An Earth Warrior who Dedicated his Life to Save the Environment