Pench Tiger Reserve formally launched the Van Adhyapak scheme, the innovative conservation programme at a function held at Sillari on the occasion of Teachers Day on Sunday.Ravindra Thakre, Additional Tribal Commissioner, Nagpur region, presided over the function while Yogesh Kumbhojkar, Chief Executive Officer,Nagpur Zilla Parishad,was the chief guest.
The participants included forest frontline staff, school teachers from ZP and Ashramshala schools, who have been selected as Vanadhyapak along with students and other officers from ZP and forest department.
Addressing the gathering, Kumbhojkar opined that such systematically planned programmes of conservation education must be promoted on the backdrop of severity of climate change and depletion of natural resources.
He assured to extend cooperation for extending it to other areas of Nagpur district and help in systematic training of Vanadhyapak, involving DIET, Nagpur.IN his presidential address, Thakre expressed the view that Vanadhyapak was a good initiative where forest department tried to join hands with other stakeholders.
For any success of government policies, inter-departmental co-ordination and joint action is now must. He appreciated the department’s efforts to reach to rural students through this innovative way and assured to support this programme in various schools located in tribal areas under his jurisdiction and make it more sustainable.
Under the scheme, forest frontline staff like range forest officers, round officers, foret guards and higher officers will regularly visit the nearby schools and educate studenst on importance of forest, wildlife, environment and its protection and conservation. Presently, there are 35 vanadhyapak in Pench Tiger Reserve, apart from 15 others in Bor and UPK Wildlife Sanctuary.During the function, selected vanadhyapak were given the certificate of induction.
On the occasion, Vanadhyapak Varsha Jagtap, forest guard, and Ajay Chute from Kolitmara Ashram School made presentation. Dr Ravikiran Govekar, CCF and Field Director of the tiger reserve briefed about the concept and broad objectives of the scheme.Prabhu Nath Shukla, Deputy Director, Pench, was prominently present. Mangesh Tate, RFO, conducted the programme while Atul Deokar, ACF, proposed a vote of thanks.