Guwahati (Assam) [India]: Womenfolk of Tanti Pather, Konwabam and Kamargaon villages in Assam’s Dibrugarh district exhibited high-quality handloom products besides other home-made edibles before the visiting British Asian Trust officials.
The exhibition was also a reflection of an encouraging outcome of Aaranyak and British Asian Trusts’ initiative to wean away villagers from their dependency on forest-based products in the greater interest of the conservation of wildlife habitats.
The village women exhibited a wide range of products that included handloom products like traditional Assamese mekhela chador, eri shawl, gamosa, and stoles besides varieties of pickle and baked items before the visiting British Asian Trust officials, Belinda Stewart Cox and Auro Shashwat and Aaranyak team comprising senior scientist Dr Bibhuti Prasad Lahkar, senior conservation biologist Dr Alolika Sinha, Zakir Islam Bora, Bidisha Borah, Ezaz Ahmed, Dhantu Gogoi, Jiyaur Rahman, along with Village Champions Monuj Chetia and Rajib Gogoi on Thursday.
The villagers have been supported by Aaranyak and British Asian Trust under a project sponsored by Darwin Initiative (UK Aid) with alternative livelihood options so that they stop depending on forest resources to supplement their income and thereby extend cooperation towards the efforts for coexistence with wild elephants.
Thirty-five beneficiaries under the initiative exhibited their products while more than 70 people participated in the event which also featured an interactive session between beneficiaries and the officials of British Asian Trust and Aaranyak.