Why in news? Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change and the Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) recently rolled out the ‘Gaj Yatra’ in Meghalaya.
’Gaj Yatra’ is a “journey celebrating India’s national heritage animal”, elephants.
It aims at securing 100 elephant corridors across India.
Four of these are in Meghalaya, including the Siju-Rewak corridor that some 1,000 elephants use to travel between the Balpakram and Nokrek National Parks in the State.
The campaign has been launched in the Garo Hills where the people have created community forests for human-elephant harmony and conservation of animals such as hoolock gibbon.
The event involves taking an elephant mascot across districts frequented by jumbo herds for generating awareness among the people.
There is also a huge role of Nokmas, traditional custodians of the land, in supporting the move towards co-existence between man and animal and helping conservationists for the success of the initiative.
An effort would also be made to install the models of elephants being carved out from waste material at prominent public places like Parliament, Rashtrapati Bhawan and at the Ministry’s premises in Indira Paryavaran Bhawan.
World elephant day:
World Elephant Day is an annual global event celebrated across the world on August 12, dedicated to the preservation and protection of elephants.
The goal of World Elephant Day is to create awareness about the plight of elephants and to share knowledge and positive solutions for the better care and management of captive and wild elephants.
African elephants are listed as “vulnerable” and Asian elephants as “endangered” in the IUCN Red List of threatened species.
As per the available population estimates, there are about 400,000 African elephants and 40,000 Asian elephants.
The elephant is part of India’s animal heritage and the Government celebrates this day to spread awareness about the conservation of the species.
An all-India synchronised elephant census has been carried to avoid errors in estimation arising from the significant movement of elephants across different states.
Elephant distribution mapping has also been done.
FACT # 2
BENGAL’S GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATION WINNERS
Why in news? Five crafts from Bengal have acquired GI fame.
Bengal’s GI winners:
GI tags are given on the basis of the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999.
The first product to be included in the list was Darjeeling Tea.
Following five rural crafts from Bengal have been presented with the Geographical Indication (GI) tag by the Geographical Indication Registry and Intellectual Property India.
The Chau mask of Purulia
the wooden mask of Kushmandi
the Dokras of Bengal
Madhurkathi (a kind of mat)
A GI tag connects the quality and authenticity of a given product to a particular geographical origin.
It ensures that no one other than the authorised user can use the popular product’s name.
GI tags for these five rural crafts would not only help the artisans create their own brand but would also provide legal protection to artisans practising the crafts against attempts to duplicate them in other regions.
The GI status for five rural products will have a direct impact on the occupation of 5,000-6,000 families in the State.
While 500 families were involved in the making of large and colourful Chau masks used in the Chau dance, also known as Chhau, in Baghmundi block of Purulia, around 200 families in Kushmandi make the wooden masks used for the Mukha dance.
In Paschim Medinipur, a few hundred families in Pingla village make the beautifully painted scrolls called Patachitra, and 3,000 families in two districts were into making Madurkathi.
FACT # 3
DIGITAL LITERACY PROGRAM
Why in news? Facebook has partnered with National Commission for Women (NCW) to launch a digital literacy program in collaboration with the Cyber Peace Foundation (CPF).
Digital literacy program:
Facebook has partnered with National Commission for Women (NCW) to launch a digital literacy program in collaboration with the Cyber Peace Foundation (CPF).
Under this awareness training will be conducted for 60,000 women in universities across major cities in Haryana, Delhi-NCR, Manipur, Sikkim, Meghalaya, Maharashtra, and Tamil Nadu over a one-year period.
These interactive sessions will provide training on safe and responsible use of the internet, social media and email and will enable trainees to differentiate between credible and questionable information.
The training will be conducted in local languages.
CPF’s volunteers can effectively work with womens’ groups to educate them and raise awareness on online safety.
National Commission for women:
The National Commission for Women (NCW) is a statutory body of the Government of India.
It is generally concerned with advising the government on all policy matters affecting women.
It was established in January 1992, as defined in the 1990 National Commission for Women Act.
The objective of the NCW is to represent the rights of women in India and to provide a voice for their issues and concerns.
The subjects of their campaigns have included dowry, politics, religion, equal representation for women in jobs, and the exploitation of women for labour.
They have also discussed police abuses against women.
The commission regularly publishes a monthly newsletter, Rashtra Mahila, in both Hindi and English.