25 Apr 2024

President Murmu tells how we can repair damage to environment at a faster pace with help of Science and Technology

Human society is making the mistake of forgetting the importance of forests. Forests are life givers. The reality is that forests have preserved life on earth, said the President Droupadi Murmu while addressing the officer trainees of Indian Forest Service (2022 batch) at their convocation ceremony at the Indira Gandhi National Forest Academy, Dehradun.

The President said that today we talk about the Anthropocene Age, which is the period of human-centric development. During this period, disastrous results have emerged along with development. Unsustainable exploitation of resources has brought humanity to a point where the standards of development have to be re-evaluated. She stressed on the importance of understanding that we are not the owners of the earth's resources, but we are trustees.

The President said that in many parts of the world the loss of forest resources has occurred very rapidly. Destruction of forests is in a way - destruction of humanity. It is a well known fact that conservation of earth's biodiversity and natural beauty is a very important task which we have to do very quickly.

‘Miyawaki Method is being adopted in many places’

The President said that human life can be saved from the crisis through conservation and promotion of forests and wildlife. We can repair the damage at a faster pace with the help of Science and Technology. For example, the Miyawaki Method is being adopted in many places. Artificial Intelligence can help in identifying suitable areas for afforestation and area specific tree species. She stated that there is a need to assess various such options and develop solutions suitable to the geographical conditions of India.

President Murmu said that the chariot of development has two wheels – tradition and modernity. Today human society is bearing the brunt of many environmental problems. One of the main reasons for this is a special type of modernity, the root of which is the exploitation of nature. Traditional knowledge is neglected in this process.

President Murmu said that tribal society has made the eternal laws of nature the basis of their life. People of this society conserve nature. But, under the impulse of unbalanced modernity, some people consider the tribal community and their collective wisdom primitive. Tribal society has no role in climate change but the burden of its ill effects is disproportionately more on them.

'We must relearn from the ideals of a balanced lifestyle of tribal society'

President Murmu said that it is very important to understand the importance of the knowledge accumulated by tribal society over centuries and use it to improve the environment. She stated that their collective wisdom can help us move forward on an ecologically sustainable, ethically desirable and socially justifiable path. She stressed that we will have to unlearn many misconceptions and relearn from the ideals of a balanced lifestyle of the tribal society. We have to move forward with the spirit of climate justice.

Referring to the mass hunting of wild animals during the British period, the President said that when she visits museums where animal skins or severed heads adorn the walls, she feels that those exhibits are telling the story of the decline of human civilization.

Murmu said that she was confident that the officers of the Indian Forest Service had become completely free from the colonial mentality. She said that the Indian Forest Service has given many officers to the country who have done unparalleled work for the environment. The President urged IFS officers to spend time among the tribal people in the field and earn their affection and trust. She said that they should learn from the good practices of the tribal society. 

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