Conserve nature for future generations, says Nagaland Chief Minister - Eastern Mirror
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Conserve nature for future generations, says Nagaland Chief Minister

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By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Mar 18, 2022 12:19 am
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Dignitaries along with the recipients of the Governor’s Award 2022 at Dr. Imkongliba Ao hall, Raj Bhavan, Kohima. (EM Image)
Caption 2:

Our Correspondent
Kohima, March 17 (EMN):
Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio on Thursday said that it is the community and individuals who own the land and its forest, and as such, they should take initiatives to conserve it.

‘Nagaland is fortunate to have vast natural resources of forests and a clean environment at our disposal. However, conservation and protection of the environment remains a big challenge and also an opportunity. Intensive community conservation can also translate into direct benefits in the form of carbon credits to the communities,’ he said.

Rio was speaking at the Governor’s Award ceremony held at Dr. Imkongliba Ao Hall, Raj Bhavan in Kohima.

The recipients of the Governor’s Award 2022 were Tizu Valley Biodiversity Conservation and Livelihood Network, Zunheboto; and Kripa Foundation, Nagaland. The former was awarded for creating social awareness and conservation of environment and protection, while the latter was recognised for its relentless effort in creating social impact and awareness on prevailing social ills and its amelioration.

Rio expressed happiness at many communities becoming aware of their social responsibilities and taking up various activities to conserve the biodiversity.

Congratulating Tizu Valley Biodiversity Conservation and Livelihood Network, he said the community conserved area, jointly managed by the villages of Sukhai, Kivikhu and Ghukhuyi in Zunheboto, measures around 1363 hectares. He expressed hope that other communities would replicate their good works.

‘The present generation is only stewards of the God-given natural habitat, and that it is our duty and responsibility to conserve it and pass it to the next generation,’ Rio said.

He went on to say that Kripa Foundation, Nagaland has been working in the challenging area of tackling the issues of substance abuse and HIV. Unfortunately, the state also has its share of alcoholism, drug abuse and the issue of people living with HIV (PLHIV). In fact, the percentage of substance abuse and the burden of HIV in the state has been one of the highest, he added.

‘Towards this end, the Kripa Foundation Nagaland has, since 1990, been working tirelessly in addressing these issues. Despite many challenges, they have relentlessly continued the battle. Reducing the problem of substance abuse; rehabilitation of victims, social stigma; reducing discrimination and helping PLHIV to live a normal life have been the contributions of the Kripa Foundation,’ Rio said.

‘Maintain balance between modernity and tradition’

The CM also congratulated the winners of essay writing competition, and said ‘all of us, both young and old, have to have a dream for a better Nagaland’.

‘It is only through concerted efforts of the people of Nagaland will we be able to take the state forward; to enjoy the fruits of modernity while preserving valued traditions and customs. Tradition and culture forms the base of the society, however, modernisation is an inevitable process. Finding a balance between the two is a very important part of not losing one’s identity, while at the same time continuing to move on with the rest of the world,’ he said.

“Nagaland was formed with recognition of our unique identity. Special provisions are embedded in various laws to preserve our cultures and traditions. These protections were given in order to allow us to progress and develop our genius without any fetters,” he added.

Excellence is culmination of concrete goals — Governor

Addressing the gathering, Prof. Mukhi said the award had been instituted to honour exemplary initiatives in various fields. It also reflected the overall vision of the government to encourage citizens to achieve their aspirations.

‘Excellence is not a result of wishful thinking or sheer luck. It is rather the culmination of concrete goals, hard and smart work aligned with those goals and judicious decisions,’ he said while congratulating the recipients of Governor’s Award.

‘The award recognises the very best ideas of Nagaland’s young people for protecting the environment. And most importantly, each of these individuals has put that knowledge to work for the community by helping to protect biodiversity- Tizu Valley Biodiversity Conservation and Livelihood Network, Zunheboto,’ he said.

“We are fortunate to have a strong community-based conservation system in place in Nagaland since time immemorial, and therefore we should promote this initiative to strengthen the motives of our age old tradition,” he added.

While congratulating the other recipient — Kripa Foundation, Nagaland –, he said the award aims to encourage, motivate and promote social work which will uplift the lives of the vulnerable Nagaland society to stay true to its identity.

Kripa Foundation has delivered the service among people afflicted with substance addiction and HIV infection, running a de-addiction cum rehab centre in Kohima town, he said.

‘The introduction of synthetic drugs and intravenous drug use leading to HIV/AIDS has added a new dimension to the issue. The menace of drug abuse is another grappling global challenge. While people of any age group can fall prey to drug abuse, teenagers and youth are particularly vulnerable to the menace. Both, the government and the civil society have an onerous responsibility to ensure that the potential victims are made aware of the perils of drug abuse and make them remain impervious to the temptations of drugs,’ the governor added.

The best solution is prevention and one needs to prevent people, particularly the youngsters from falling prey to substance abuse. There is a need to launch special campaigns targeted at vulnerable groups like school and college students to make them aware of the deleterious effects of drug abuse, said Mukhi.

He also called upon the citizens to contribute towards preventing and reducing the damage caused by the social ills to move towards a healthier and happier society.

He informed that the essay competition was held as part of Statehood Day celebration and the idea behind instituting these awards was to provide an opportunity to compete and share their views on topics, which are relevant for the rapid socio-economic development, and to recognise young talents.

The governor gave away INR 1 lakh and citation to the two recipients of Governor’s Award.

He also awarded three winners of the state-level essay competition in various categories: Mariam, Class 10 student of Baptist Higher Secondary School, Mangkolemba, Mokokchung; Loni S Shikhu, BEd (2nd year), Mount Mary College, Dimapur; and Yiben B Humtsoe, Tourist Colony, Wokha.

State Chief Secretary J Alam in his keynote address informed that the award, which was started in 2020, are chosen after a rigorous selection process.

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By Reyivolü Rhakho Updated: Mar 18, 2022 12:19:45 am