Jungle ki Aag : An article by B. C. Joshi
It was nearly 3 am in the morning when I felt suffocated inside the moving Bus while traveling in Uttarakhand on 28th May 2005. We had just passed Haldwani a few minutes ago. It smelt fire and smoke. I glanced out of window and saw huge fire in nearby jungle. On later part of our journey from Kathgodam to Kapkote, what I witnessed was the burning evidence of unthoughtful human activities and cruelty towards nature. Almost every inch forest land either had fire engulfing it or traces of recent fire.
Jungle caught fire or fire was ignited by unscrupulous elements
In daytime, when the sun was shining bright,
I noticed that whole atmosphere of the hils was smoky
spreading blanket of mist all over the hills.
Even the visibility was very poor. I found this alien as I had expected a
clean and fully transparent atmosphere where a person can see for miles without any difficulty.
The whole atmosphere had become smoky
Grassland (Bugyals?) and meadows full of greenery
which I had in my childhood memories were nowhere
to be seen. The land was bare, dusty and mostly black.
Apart from the grass, Fire had destroyed small plants.
I remember, there used to be thousands of small plants
of hundreds of varieties making a thick green cover to
the land of nearby forests not far from my village but
now there are only traces of destruction by human being themselves.
Small plants are burnt
The ill effects of havoc that fire had played were
not limited to small plants. Huge pine trees dripping
‘Leesa’ were also prime victims. Hundreds of pine trees has been destroyed.
Highly inflammable pine trees suffered most
I always felt pride in boasting the our state has best
area / forest cover ratio in the country but I was zapped
to see such a loss of ruthless demolition of green gift
nature had bestowed on us in abundance.
I had taken my wife to show her my lovely grasslands where
I had spend hours and hours together in the lap of nature
while escorting our herd of cows, sheeps, goats and other
pet animals. The jungle full of Hisalu, kilmori, kafal and
a red carpet of Buransh during this time of the year but
all was lost. I returned home with heavy heart.
Bhagwan mere logon ko sadbuddhi do. May god bless people.
Jane kahaaaaaaan gayeeeeee wo jungle?
Where did those jungles go?
Article by B. C. Joshi
He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org