A policy adopted to ensure the provision for the basic facilities to the people in the remote mountainous areas must also protect the biodiversity and the environment. Uttarakhand Governor Krishan Kant Paul said this while speaking at the inaugural session of the three-day international seminar on sustainable development challenges in the Himalaya, organised by the Sri Dev Suman Uttarakhand University at the Doon University here on Wednesday.
Governor Paul emphasized that a balance must be established between development and environment conservation.
The Governor said, “The Himalayas are not just a landscape but an important centre of human civilisation from where our culture and civilization emanated. Studies on the Himalayas cannot be confined only to geological and scientific analysis. The Himalayas are the soul of the vast and rich Indian heritage and culture.”
He said that Uttarakhand was one of the important Himalayan States and the effects of global warming could be seen here leading to cloudbursts, landslides and other natural disasters. To save the rivers, forests, wildlife and biodiversity of the State, the participation of the local people must be ensured. In the absence of basic infrastructure, the problem of people migrating from the mountainous areas is very serious in the State.
The Governor said he hoped that the three-day seminar would come to substantial conclusions which would help formulate effective policies.
Union Minister of State for Textiles, Ajay Tamta said that development of such techniques must be taken up which could help people know about natural disasters some time before the disasters occurred. He said the Central Government was serious about development of the Himlayan regions and fulfilling the needs of the people there.
Delivering the keynote address, Department of Science and Technology SPLICE head Akhilesh Gupta said that there are unique challenges in each Himalayan state. He stressed on the need to build research capacity to study complex processes linked to sustainable development. It is also necessary to enhance monitoring of the Himalayan ecosystem for which a network of observational and monitoring network should be established. Community based management should be promoted and regional cooperation should also be strengthened, he added.
Additional Chief Secretary Ranvir Singh, SDSUU Vice Chancellor US Rawat and the Doon University Vice Chancellor professor Kusum Arunachalam also addressed the gathering in the inaugural session.
Later during the plenary session, retired bureaucrat Mukul Sanwal spoke on the policy aspects needed for development in the Himalaya region. Former vice chancellor of the Garhwal Central University, SP Singh expressed his views on climate change. He said that uncontrolled construction activity in the Himalayan region is a threat to the environment.
Himalaya subject expert from USA, Jack Croucher said that economic backwardness is the major reason for migration from the Himalayan regions. The State’s former principal chief conservator of forests Raghu Bir Singh Rawat expressed his views on the management of ecological system.
Later in the day, technical sessions were held on the subjects of development and environment, human-nature conflict and health and education. read more post…
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