The Chipko movement, also known as the Chipko Andolan, was a forest conservation movement. It was an ecological movement that took place in the northern Himalayas segment of Uttar Pradesh (later Uttarakhand) during the 1970’s. Chipko Movement was a non-violent movement aimed at protection and conservation of trees and forests from being destroyed. It created an example for starting of non-violent protest in India, and its success meant that the world immediately took notice. It inspired many such eco-groups by helping to slow down the rapid deforestation, expose vested interests, increase ecological awareness, and demonstrate the viability of people power. The movement got its name from the word ‘embrace or hug’ and that’s what hundreds of nature lovers did in order to save the trees from being illegally chopped down. Today, Google celebrates the 45th anniversary of Chipko Movement. Also Read - Chipko Movement Pioneer Sundarlal Bahuguna Succumbs to COVID-19
The movement was particularly led by women in India and aimed at protecting trees and forests slated for government-backed logging. The incident inspired the several other rural women, who in 1970’s launched such similar movements in different parts of India. It is really surprising that the women of that age were better aware of the significance of forests. Rural women in India actively participated in the movement about deforestation and its consequences. Some of the key women leaders who fought for the protection of forests, whom they call their maternal mother, were Gaura Devi, Sudesha Devi, Bachni Devi, Dev Suman, Mira Behn, Sarala Behn and Amrita Devi. Also Read - Rajnath Singh Attacks Rahul Gandhi, Says One Who Couldn't Maintain Dignity of Parliament, Dreams to Become PM
All you need to know about Chipko Movement:
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- Sunderlal Bahuguna coined the Chipko slogan, “Ecology is permanent economy”.
- Chipko Andolan began to preserve the nature from being mercilessly destroyed on accounts of dam construction, setting up of factories or roads.
- The original movement dates back to the 18th century in Rajasthan where people of Bishnoi community resisted deforestation by embracing them.
- The movement was led by Amrita Devi, 383 people from 84 villages sacrificed their lives protecting a group of Kehri trees.
- Sunderlal Bahuguna along with Dhoom Singh Negi, Bachni Devi, Chandi Prasad Bhatt took part in the Chipko Andolan.
- The movement got its name from the word ‘embrace or hug’ and that’s what hundreds of nature lovers did in order to save the trees from being illegally chopped down.