Sunday, Nov 20, 2022 08:00 [IST]
Last Update: Sunday, Nov 20, 2022 02:27 [IST]
GANGTOK,: Forest minister Karma Loday Bhutia on Friday interacted with the school children at Fambonglho Wildlife Sanctuary. He was accompanied by chief wildlife warden Sandeep Tambey and conservator of forest (wildlife circle) Udai Gurung.
A press release informs that the Forest minister had during a function organized by the G.B. Pant Institute on September 10 desired that a program be designed to specifically educate school children on biodiversity conservation by means of organizing outdoor nature tours.
Accordingly, as part of an initiative under the National Mission for Himalayan Studies and in order to impart hands-on education to school children on biodiversity conservation, a short trek was organized under the directives of the minister by the East Wildlife Division.
A total of 40 school children from classes 6 and 7 along with 8 teachers participated in the trek. The Education department facilitated the participation of the schools’ namely Enchey Senior Secondary School; Bojoghari Senior Secondary School; Pangthang Junior High School; Burtuk Senior Secondary School; Arithang Senior Secondary School; Penlong Senior Secondary School; Tashi Namgyal Academy and Tathangchen Senior Secondary School.
The children were briefed on the natural and cultural values of the Fambonglho Wildlife Sanctuary and the need to conserve and protect our natural resources. The school children thoroughly enjoyed the outdoor learning and interacted enthusiastically with the minister and senior officers. They admitted that it was a memorable experience, the release mentions.
The name Fambonglho is derived from the Lepcha language, which translates as the ‘Hill of the Machilus edulis’ (Fam – Machilus edulis/ Pomsi/Phunsay ;lho – hill). The most popular narrative as to how the name came to be takes one back to the time when automobiles were unheard of; the entire hill was covered with thick forests inter-spread with paddy fields; then people had humble dwellings and the mainstay was agriculture and animal husbandry.
Gangtok town was small, with wooden houses and the mode of transportation was ponies and horses. The residents of the villages located all around the fringes of the forests which is now a sanctuary, had to walk long distances to travel from one village to another, sometimes crossing over several hills. The travellers’ en-route along the way rested and ate from the trees of Machilus edulis, which was in abundance. In this manner people crossed over now and then, relishing the fruits of the Pomsi tree and thus the name, the release mentions.