Apr 6, 2015
LUCKNOW: Black and red `ghunchi’ seeds can turn into exquisite necklaces and danglers when beaded with sandal and other seeds. Bamboo similarly can be made into an eco-friendly strap for a wrist watch or a piece of jewellery for neck, ears and fingers. Women who have for ages depended on forest for their livelihood are turning designers in converting forest produce into attractively done jewellery pieces and souvenirs for home decor. Training of the women folk is a part of the community development programme taken up by state government in forest areas under its eco-tourism policy. The programme aims at making forest dwellers self-dependent. Training has been completed at Dudhwa and, at present, is being conducted at Rampurwa village in Katarniaghat. “Most of these people cut trees for firewood. I am making them learn other uses of forest produce,” said trainer Neera Sarmah.
Once eco-tourism starts at all the locations identified for it in the state, tourists may get to buy the products directly from locals. But providing market linkages to local communities so that they can fetch fair price for their products is also being worked out. “A traditional `dalia’ (basket made of twigs) is what many may like to buy but do not know where to get the ethnic one. These forest dwellers have been making it for ages,” said director, Dudhwa tiger reserve, Sanjay Singh. Programme is being conducted along with the UP Forest Corporation (UPFC) which is a nodal agency for eco-tourism in the state.
Sites like Katarniaghat on Gerua river in Bahraich, Chuka ghat in Pilibhit on Sharda dam, Chambal ravines in Agra, Nawabganj Bird Sanctuary in Unnao, Chandraprabha Rajdari water falls and Deodari water falls in Varanasi, Sarsainawar Sarus Sanctuary in Etawah, Sandi Bird Sanctuary in Hardoi, Noida Bird Sanctuary and Kalpi river cruise in Yamuna in Jalaun have been identified as eco-tourism spots. Despite being announced two years ago, eco-tourism policy of UP government is yet to catch pace.
As posted in Timesofindia.indiatimes.com