Every now and then, we wake up to news about violent crimes, communal hatred and harassment. In the midst of a lot of these negative events, a small village in Assam sitting on a corridor frequented by elephants is setting a straight example with a grand gesture. Hopefully, we can all learn from this.
Here’s what this village did to deal with its location problem.
The Ram Terang village in Assam had been in conversations with various organisations focused on wildlife preservation to discuss the elephant corridor.
Numerous organisations like NGO Wildlife Trust of India (WTI), the local forest department, the Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council, UK-based NGO Elephant Family, and Netherlands-based International Union for Conservation of Nature, had been negotiating with the village to come up with a solution for the fact that the village sat on a corridor that is frequented by wild elephants.
As a solution, the villagers decide to relocate the whole village!
Now known as the New Ram Terang village, 19 tribal families relocated to the new space giving way to the vital elephant corridor, which the Japan Tiger and Elephant Fund helped plan and support financially. The 2.5 km long corridor is used by an estimated 1800 elephants. And, the relocation helps curb the often dangerous encounters between the villagers and the elephants.
The relocation move is, in fact, mutually beneficial.
While the elephants get a safe and free pass through the corridor, each family in the village has got a new home built that looks like their old one. Along with 1.3 acres of arable land, a toilet and a bathroom which were amenities that were previously widely unavailable.