The recent Paris Climate summit might have generated debate about climate change and the environment but inspiring stories of showing love and care for nature mostly remain obscure. 

One such story is of Jadav Payeng in Assam. At the age of 17, Jadav started to plant trees on barren land and who would have thought what those saplings would be after years of care and perseverance.

Payeng of the Mising tribe of Northeast India, previously known as the Miris, was hired as a labourer for an afforestation project undertaken on 200 ha. of land on Aruna sapori by the Social Forestry Division of Golaghat district in 1979.

The five-year project was abandoned in three and while the rest of the workers packed up and disappeared into government files, Payeng, who had nowhere else to go, stayed on. He continued to plant more trees, while nurturing the existing vegetation, on his own.

The barren land today is a 1200 hectare jungle. In appreciation of his single handed efforts, the Assam government has named the forest he helped grow after him, as Mulai Kathoni Bari or the forest of Mulai, Payeng’s pet name. 

Watch the video of rightly called the ‘Forest Man of India’

Little efforts can do wonders. What will be yours?

Feature image source: Video Screenshot