Forgiveness is the greatest revenge!
In the land of Gandhi, we don’t believe in the idea, “An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth." Obviously, this is an expression of the principle of reciprocal justice. If such a system is allowed to be let loose, then it would give rise to chaos and mayhem in society and the country as well. Parents and teachers have been trying to infuse the words of wisdom: ‘forgiveness is the greatest revenge’ in the young minds at home and in school, respectively. Despite the fact that the words of wisdom could not gain ground in the minds and hearts of people, rather, they are waning out of our midst at a faster pace. And we are witnessing the outcome in society and across the country on a day-to-day basis. It implies that parenting and schooling could not deliver the goods as yet. Even the states are not way behind in perpetuating the phrase “feed fat their ancient grudge." Take the conflicts between Israel and Hamas, Russia and Ukraine as test cases. As a result, a humanitarian crisis is enveloping the world. Nobody knows for sure how and when it will end. I would like to put some historical facts in perspective, considering the issue is on the same page. Badan Barphukan, in his struggle to annex power in Assam during Ahom rule, was instrumental in spreading the red carpet to the Burmese army (Man) to begin with. Its consequences were dreadful! It is vividly described in history how death and destruction were inflicted on Assam and the Assamese people. Lakhs of people got killed, maimed, and displaced. From the above example, I want to drive the point home: should his descendants be punished by the present generation physically and blackmailed emotionally? The Mughals and British also ruled India in the past. Without doubt, they did many good as well as bad things. And those were things of the past. Now, the fact is that their descendants are being targeted differently in the country at different points in time, which is highly condemnable and reprehensible too. Such chain reactions lead us nowhere. Mahatma Gandhi rightly said, “An eye for an eye will make the whole world blind.”
Concerns about the decline in bird population at Deepor Beel
I am writing to express deep concerns over the alarming decline in the number of birds visiting the Deepor Beel wetland, as revealed by the recent Deepor Beel Winter Birding Festival (WBF) conducted by 7WEAVES Research. The stark contrast between this year's findings and the previous year's statistics, recording only 11,000 birds of 155 species compared to 28,000 birds of 161 species, is cause for immediate attention.
The significant decrease in the bird population at Deepor Beel has been attributed to various factors, including habitat loss, reduced food availability, and increased human activity in the area. These findings underscore the urgent need for concerted efforts to protect Deepor Beel as a bird sanctuary to ensure the preservation of biodiversity and the overall health of the ecosystem.
The Deepor Beel Winter Birding Festival serves as a crucial platform for highlighting the importance of understanding and coexisting with birds in harmony. It is disheartening to learn that human activities and environmental changes are negatively impacting the bird population in this vital wetland.
The identification of hotspots for bird migration outside the protected zone, such as Dharapur, Jalukbari, and Boragaon, indicates the significance of extending conservation efforts beyond the immediate sanctuary boundaries. However, the challenges posed by difficult access to some regions during the study period, due to rising water levels, further highlight the vulnerability of these ecosystems.
I urge the concerned authorities to take immediate action to address the factors contributing to the decline in bird numbers at Deepor Beel. This includes implementing measures to curb habitat loss, ensuring sustainable development practices, and increasing awareness among the local communities about the importance of preserving these natural habitats.
Preserving our wetlands and bird sanctuaries is not just an environmental obligation but a shared responsibility towards safeguarding our natural heritage for future generations. The Deepor Beel Winter Birding Festival should serve as a wake-up call to prioritize the conservation of such critical ecosystems.
Coordination among the government departments
The current scenario of development works, especially within Guwahati city, highlights that there is neither cooperation nor coordination between the departments engaged in the works. This work culture is causing harassment to the common citizen as well as wasting public money. Many times, it comes to notice that newly constructed roads or structures are demolished repeatedly by the works of Jal Board, mobile companies, LPG pipes, or electricity supply companies. Even after the completion of the jobs, no repair work is followed up immediately. Therefore, I suggest to the state government that it bring all the departments under one roof with one controlling office for better management and smooth development in Guwahati City.
Waste of talent
Sometimes I wonder whether our star cricketer Riyan Parag should rue his luck for being born in Assam, as the state cricket association is nothing but the court jesters of a few top officials of the BCCI. In spite of dishing out a high-level performance in the Syed Mustaq Ali Trophy or in the Ranji Trophy, he has failed to catch the eyes of the national selectors. It is only due to the indifferent attitude of the members of the state cricket governing body. Whoever has been following the national side for the last two to three decades must have observed that many less talented or less competent players have donned the national jersey because the respective state cricket association pursued and followed their case on the floors of BCCI. In Parag’s case, leave alone the call for national duty, he is even not selected for India A side tours or to play warm-up matches for any visiting side. It is simply a case of a waste of talent. It’s time for the entire crew of ACA to be shown the exit door.