Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, June 2:
The Odisha forest department has promised all support to Mangalajodi Ecotourism, an organisation that recently won the prestigious India Biodiversity Award 2014, for biodiversity conservation in the bird habitat of Mangalajodi in Chilka Lake.
“To ensure biodiversity conservation of the bird protected area of Mangalajodi, the forest department will lend all support to and conduct joint patrolling with Mangalajodi Ecotourism in close coordination with ground level staffs,” said Bimal Prasana Acharya, DFO Chilika Wildlife Division, at a press conference here today.
Niranjan Prasad Behera and Purna Chandra Behera received the award on behalf of Mangalajodi Ecotourism from Lt General (Retd) A K Singh, the Lt Governor of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands recently. The award includes a citation, a trophy and a cheque worth Rs 50,000.
Mangalajodi Ecotourism, promoted by Indian Grameen Services (IGS) and supported by Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) Foundation India since 2010, got the prestigious award for its excellence in biodiversity governance across the country.
The award, instituted by the Government of India and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) under its Community Stewardship category, was given away at a ceremony held at Port Blair in Andaman recently.
“In the coming days, conservation work will be strengthened with low impact tourism practices and the ecotourism enterprise will move to the next level of institutional collaboration with government and private agencies,” said Sanjib Sarangi, Odisha Head of IGS.
Tourist inflow to Mangalajodi, recognized as one of the perfect eco-destinations in the country, has been increasing every year, which has helped generate sizeable revenue for the local communities..
Mangalajodi Ecotourism has already bagged many awards and recognitions including RBS Earth Hero Award 2012 under Earth Guardian Category and Runners up award for TOFT Wildlife Tourism Award 2010.
Mangalajodi is a small picturesque village on north-western fringe of Chilika Lake in Odisha, known for its marshes and water fowl congregations. It is just 75 km from the State capital Bhubaneswar.