Jasmine: The Pride of Sundarbans

  • Jasmine: The Pride of Sundarbans


     



     


    I am an icon of strength, beauty, fearlessness and prowess. People know me as the Royal Bengal Tiger. My name is Jasmine and I am the pride of Sundarbans, my home!  My home, Sundarbans, is the largest forest in Bangladesh and the most significant single track Mangrove forest in the world. My beautiful home  also holds immense biodiversity of Flora and Fauna. That is why I am proud to say that my home is one of the best ecosystems in the world! I have lived in the Sundarbans for almost 9 years and I know my home has so many tangible and non-tangible resources. 



    Today, I want to share an incident that happened to me a few days ago. One bright morning, I drank some water from the nearby river and started strolling in the Sundarbans like I always do.  I suddenly heard a loud noise and immediately got alerted as I am extremely good with my sight, smell, hearing and memory. A little bit far away along the river, I saw a group of people getting in this forest from a boat. They spent a good amount of time in my Sundarbans home and took away many resources from here such as the honey, fish, wax, medicinal plants, fuelwood, and golpata.  When they were about to leave, they suddenly spotted me in the bushes. They immediately started screaming at me and tried to scare me with their axes. I gave a loud roar and ran away for my life. 



    Today, only about a hundred tigers like me are left in the Sundarbans. Everyday these local Sundarbans people are coming closer and closer to my habitat, taking all the forest resources and trying to kill me if I get spotted! I could be extinct in the next 50 years if this kind of poaching or lynching goes on.  And one day, you will not see me anymore! Bangladesh and Sundarbans will finally lose its pride. 



    Sundarbans, the largest mangrove in Asia is not only home to the Royal Bengal tigers, but is home to many other resources and endangered species that are equally important as the tigers. Munda and many other local communities are living near the forest area and sometimes exploit these precious resources. The primary income of these communities comes from forest resources, such as honey, fish, golpata and many more. To save Sundarbans, Bangladesh Forest Department has taken some initiative to limit the use of forest resources. All these actions are now a barrier to the livelihood of the forest communities. As a result, the communities' customary rights are questioned, and they are taking illegal ways to collect forest resources which in turn is hampering Forest Health. 



    Now, for our quiz question today, please answer the following:


    What will you do from your perspective to improve the condition of the local community alongside saving Sundarbans from degradation?


    Please try to write your answer in 185 words or less in the comments section below. Please submit your answer by May 30th. Then we will share everyone's answers and start a discussion on this topic. The person with the most practical and creative answer for this quiz will get $5. Runner-up or the second best will get $3.   


    -- Quiz concept designed by Ariful Alam, Khulna University


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    The winner of this quiz is Farjana Lima who won $5 and runner-ups are Zeba Afia and Hymanti Sarkar who won $3 respectively.  



    Please click here to see everyone's quiz highlights here. 


    We learned a lot by reading everyone's answers. Thank you everyone for sharing your ideas in this quiz!


     


    After reading everyone's answers it looks like the following are the solutions to save the Sundarbans as well as support the local Sundarbans community so they do not harm the forest for their livelihood:


    1) Focus on providing trainings and jobs to support the local Sundarbans community. This may solve majority of the problems because if they have proper jobs (which is not dependent on Sundarbans), they will not harm the forest. But this will take time for a developing country like Bangladesh, but this is the best long term solution as this will preserve the forest in the best possible way and also help the next generation focus on getting creative jobs rather than old school jobs that have been harming the forest for so long.


    2) Government, NGOs and forest authorities need to work with the local communities to guard the forest from further harm. Some contributors even suggested high tech Sundarbans protections using trackers, drone and thermal cameras, which were interesting to read.


    3) Continuous awareness programs and campaigns should be provided to the local Sundarbans community so they know the value of Sundarbans and do not harm it any further.


     


     


       


     

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Comments

27 comments
  • Zeba Afia and Md. Hazrat Ali like this
  • Farjana Zaman
    Farjana Zaman Appointing community leaders as forest guards or watchman will keep the community people away from exploiting resources. Second step should be creating alternative employment facilities for other community families.
    May 30, 2021
  • Md. Hazrat Ali
    Md. Hazrat Ali The Sundarbans is a cluster of the low land island in the Bay of Bengal. It was the world’s largest mangrove with an area of 10000 Km2 where 60% in Bangladesh and the rest
    in India. The local people alongside Sundarbans are completely dependent on this...  more
    May 30, 2021
  • Hymanti  Sarkar
    Hymanti Sarkar Firstly, if we notice the occupations of local people, we can see most frequently practiced professions are Mouwal, Baowal, fisherman, collecting golpata, fish fry, crab etc, poaching. So, they are highly dependent on forest. And the main reasons of this...  more
    May 30, 2021
  • Hymanti  Sarkar
    Hymanti Sarkar development. But for all of these proper guide and fund are necessary.
    May 30, 2021