Friday, January 25, 2008

Sadhus on save lion mission.


Sadhus on save lion mission…

Times of India Ahmedabad Edition

Junagadh: As we get more and more environment friendly and everybody is doing their bit to save our wildlife, “Sadhus” are also failing into line. “Lions are an identity of the Sorath region, the erstwhile Junagadh, the other two being sadhus and valiant men,” said Mahamandaleswar Bhartibapu, addressing a seminar in the midst of the Gir jungle. The seminar was organized to spread awareness about saving the lion among residents.

The residents were made to pledge to the lion’s cause as they took an oath to preserve lions and conserve nature. They also discussed steps to bring about more awareness among people.

Sadhus have joined in a big way to protect the Gir lion, which has borne the brunt of poachers. Incidents of lion massacre prompted Sadhus to take the lead in this endeavor. They have addressed meetings all over the region, exhorting people to check the plight of forests and protect not only the lion, but also all other flora and fauna.

Mahamandaleshwar Vishwamber Bharati who addressed a meeting at Jambudi in the north hill ranges of Gir administered the oath and said that the lion was symbolic to Indian heritage. They find mention in sacred texts. Seals and coins with lion symbolizes saving the cultural heritage. Sorath’s legacy must be protected.

Mahant Bharatdas Bapu of Banej and his disciple Chandravadandas Bharatdas, bhesan TDO tuwar and sarpanchs of nearby villagers attended these meetings as well. “Mere laws won’t help. Active participation of people is needed to achieve such goals, said Deputy Conservator of Forest, P S Babariya.

North range RFO S K Jadeja and Vijay Yoganandi advised people to curb poaching and also desist from acts that crippled lions. He said farmers should not use equipment that causes electric shock to lions. Fencing wells, to avoid lions from falling into them was also discussed to check lions falling into unused wells.

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