Sunderlal Bahuguna, the guardian of nature and a leading fighter in environmental struggles has left us. The 'Chipko' movement, which was started in 1973 by women in Uttarakhand to stop the cutting down of trees in the hills for industrial projects, came to fruition through the intervention of Bahuguna. (Inspired by the heroism of the Bishnois of Rajasthan, the women, and children who defended the royal soldiers who came to cut down the trees that protected the houses from the sand winds, the Gadwal Himalayas in the 1970s. It had the meaning of "embracing the tree and gaining the strength of the environment.") In the 1950s his struggle was against untouchability. Later organized women and fought against alcoholism.
Similarly, the fight against the Tehri Dam, which is being built on the Ganges, was intensified in 1979 with the demolition of hills, the eviction of many locals, and the removal of thousands of cedar trees. Rejecting the Padma Shri award in 1981, he said: "If I want to be given an award, the first thing I need to do is an order that no one should cut down trees in the Himalayan mountains." In 1989, a two-and-a-half-month-long hunger strike against the raising of the dam was successful. In 1981, with the intervention of Indira Gandhi, logging in the Himalayas was banned. India honored him with the Padma Vibhushan award in 2009. He taught the lesson of Gandhi that what is needed here is for everyone and not for greed. What we have lost is the 'Guardian' who taught the new generation to love nature with their ears attached to the tree and to hear what the mountains and rivers have to say.
Tearful tributes from the heart.
small drops make a mighty ocean