The Weekend Leader - Sparrow heroes

Sparrow heroes identified, and honoured in Bangalore

Rama Devi Menon   |   Hyderabad


Vol 2 | Issue 11

The efforts of ‘unsung heroes’ silently working for conservation of sparrows and other birds were recognized at the recently concluded World Sparrow Day Celebrations organized by Nature Forever Society at the sprawling campus of Wipro Technologies Ltd in Bangalore on March 20.

The recipients of this year’s Sparrow Awards – instituted to recognize the efforts of the common man towards environmental conservation - included Coimbatore-based Bhavin Shah, a wholesale dealer of fast moving consumer goods, who has assisted nearly 25 industries in the city to adopt nest boxes and make their premises sparrow-friendly.

In limelight: Nature Forever Society recognized the silent work of ordinary people in caring for nature by conferring on few of them Sparrow Awards  

Narendra Singh Chaudhary, Divisional Forest Officer of Lansdowne Division, Uttarakhand, was honored for his initiative to bring about remarkable changes in and around the Corbett National Park, which included his recent efforts to demand a buffer zone status for the reserved forests of Lansdowne that has a high density of tigers.

L Shyamal, a bio-medical statistical analyst, who is the largest contributor of Indian Natural History in Wikipedia, and the creator of a software called Birdspot with a database of 50,000 birds, was the other recipient of the Sparrow Award.

The Green Initiatives Award was conferred on ‘Sparrow’, a business venture launched by 28 dynamic students from Mallya Aditi International School, Bangalore, who have been selling select merchandise such as wooden sparrow-nesting boxes, tees, flip-flops and coffee mugs, all embossed with unique sparrow themes.

Dr Asad Rahmani, director of Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), conferred the awards to the recipients.

The Nature Forever Society also announced the winners of the BiodiverCity Photo Competition, where amateur photographers clicked the common flora and fauna in their areas using digital cameras, SLRs or mobile phones.

The winners in the adult category were: Vijay Dhankhar, who clicked the picture of a sparrow roosting on a tree decorated with lighting wires, which aptly showcased the plight of the sparrow in the midst of human festivities; Varadharajan Gokula, whose image of two Pelicans in a swampy cityscape, showed how wildlife finds a place even in a polluted urban setting; and Shashin V Vardhave, whose picture of sea gulls perched comfortably against the backdrop of Mumbai’s high-rises again emphasized the importance of wildlife in a concrete jungle.

The winners in the junior category were 11-year-old Vikas Madhav, who sent an image of a caged African lovebird being visited by a rose ring parakeet, which highlighted the plight of caged birds; and Ritwika Maity for her picture of parakeets sitting on the balcony of an old-style Indian house.

Speaking on the occasion, Mohammed Dilawar, founder president of the Nature Forever Society said, “For the last 60 years, the common man has remained out of the conservation movement. With World Sparrow Day, our aim is to involve people from all walks of life – housewives, engineers and software professionals - in the movement for conservation of sparrows.”

Christian Pilard, founder of France-based Eco-Sys Action Foundation, was the chief guest at the event.

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