10 villagers of Choklangan in Noklak donate their ancestral forest lands to set up biodiversity conservation area; move aimed at safeguarding degrading environment
Kohima: The recently-launched Biodiversity Peace Corridor at Choklangan Village under Noklak subdivision of the state is aiming to foster ecological harmony besides safeguarding the degrading environment. While hoping to promote livelihood to the community, the local initiative also seeks to sensitise Nagas of Myanmar about the need to maintain balance in the ecology.
A DIPR special feature said that the Biodiversity Peace Corridor at Choklangan Village was conceptualised to bring people from different cultures and create a harmonious setting with the eco-system. On how the idea of a peace corridor originated in the minds, it said that on the last day of a three-day leadership development training which was organised by the Choklangan Baptist Church and the Council, forest owners volunteered to donate their lands for biodiversity conservation.
It said that the leadership development training had emphasised on the role of leaders in safeguarding the environment, which prompted the landowners to brainstorm the idea of conserving biodiversity, following which the land owners signed and put thumb impressions on paper to officially declare their concerns, urging the need for a conservation mission. A total of 10 forest land owners reportedly donated their ancestral forest lands to set up the biodiversity conservation area.
“The vision is to bring all the villages neighbouring Choklangan and also bring the Nagas in Myanmar to join in this peace movement,” it said. While launching the Biodiversity Peace Corridor on March 9, chief secretary, Temjen Toy also inaugurated a new school building under the ‘composite model’.
In 10 years’ time, the Biodiversity Peace Corridor, it said, will be set up in different locations across the state. It said that the biodiversity movement which began at Choklangan village bordering Myanmar, envisions to create a biodiversity corridor across all districts, states and to also connect with Myanmar.
The Biodiversity Peace Corridor will create a platform for villages around Choklangan to conduct seminars and workshops with the hope to create an improved eco system, so that Nagas living in Myanmar such as Thaingan, Thsunkhao and other hundreds of villages engaged in rigorous hunting of wild species will be invited to join the peace movement, thereby creating a biodiversity hotspot in the next 10-20 years.
It said that with proper management of land, the community will also be able to generate income. “It will be imperative to introduce a sustainable livelihood for the community with an integrated and multiple cropping in a recommended land which will make the biodiversity sustainable,” it added.
It went on to say that the perennial water system, conducive for terrace farming, is practised by a few people who can afford it. It suggested that if the governmental departments including agriculture and horticulture departments contribute funds towards the Innovative and integrated farming, the proposed plan will be more effective.
Highlighting how Choklangan village is surrounded by several monumental sites, it said that financial and maintenance of the sites will enable the locals to generate livelihood opportunities. “The most important driving force of Biodiversity Peace Corridor will enable the Nagas living in Nagaland to sensitise the Nagas inside Myanmar to join in this venture and contribute towards the safeguarding of the degrading environment and create an improved biodiversity in the next 10 years,” it concluded.