Central Soil and Water Conservation Research and Training Institute celebrates Himalayan day: Takes a pledge for saving Himalayas

The Himalayan Day celebrated at Central Soil and Water Conservation Research and Training Institute (CSWCRTI), Dehra Dun on 09 Sep, 2013, which begun with the welcoming of the staff members and guests of the Institute assembled. In his highlights, Dr PK Mishra, Director, CSWCRTI reassured that the institute strives for the sustainable management of Himalayas. He urged all the staff of CSWCRTI and the inhabitants in the Himalayan region to use the resources present responsibly for their own benefit and the people in downstream reaches. Dr RC Jakhmola, Head (HRDSS) and the coordinator of the event presented a brief introduction on the importance of Himalayas and the Day.

A personal oath with the focus of “Conserve Soil and Water” – “Save Himalaya” “Save Life” was undertaken in the beginning. The English transcript of the oath in Hindi taken transcribes that “We will respect and show our gratitude to the Himalayas. We will not harm environmental condition of the Himalayas and will not allow anybody to do so. We will rationally use the natural resources available in Himalayas. We will try our level best in all conditions at all levels to conserve and improve the environment of Himalayas. We will always be active for the same”.

As a part of the event on the day, two special lectures by Dr Santosh Kr Rai and Dr S.K. Bartarya, Senior-level Scientists at Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology (WIHG), D. Dun were organised to understand the Himalayan ecosystems better. The lectures highlighted the implications of weathering, erosion flexes, landslides, sediment budgeting, carbon sequestration potential etc. in the Himalaya-Ganga-Bay of Bengal system. Geology of Ganga river system with the focus on weathering and erosion in Himalayas and zonation of landslides were discussed in the interaction. Dr Santosh and Dr Bartarya informed that the Gandak river system is the major source of erosion and sediments and landslides cause huge damages, which need early warning system and harmonious management of the region.

Remembering the recent havocs in Uttarakhand Dr GP Juyal, Head (Hydrology and Engineering Division) emphasized the survival problems by bringing a caption that “Save Himalaya and be saved from Himalaya”. Earlier Dr UK Mauria, Sr Scientist (Soil science) introduced the guest lecturers to set off the topic of discussion.

Dr PK Mishra informed the house that the lectures had brought live interaction with the scientists and collaborative interests on soil-water conservation, land slide control and zonation of land hazards between the two institutes, located in Himalayan region. Later during the lecture session Dr OP Chaturvedi, Head (Plant Science Division) briefed the importance of Himalaya, its biodiversity and ecosystems for climate amelioration, socio-economic importance and livelihood support.

The celebration highlighted the importance of Himalayas, its ecosystems, biodiversity, and resources for climate regulation, livelihoods and socio-economics of the hills and plains. The Day was also organised at the Research Farm, Selakui and the Research Centre of the CSWCRTI located at Chandigarh. The celebration ended with vote of thanks by Dr Chaturvedi.

M Muruganandam
Highlighting the importance of Himalayas the celebration urged all the staff of CSWCRTI to try their level best at all times to conserve and improve the environment of mountain range and be active for the same.