THE JUNGLEES have instituted its flagship initiative GREEN GUARD AWARDS, since 2000, a biennial wildlife service awards scheme to recognise the effective and dauntless services of the forest staff engaged in protecting our country's Wildlife and Natural Heritage, often by risking their own lives.
Our Nature reserves are like an open treasury. This precious wealth has been left to be guarded by a grossly inadequate number of men and machines. This makes the vigilance vulnerable and even non-existent at places. This inadequacy is compounded by lack of political will to conservation and by loopholes in legal system. Poaching, pilferage and pillage of our forests and wildlife are a direct consequence of this neglect. Media reports can barely portray the terrifying picture of plunder, trade and mismanagement of various life forms and very life support system.
Ever since the inception of THE JUNGLEES, we have been frequenting forests across the country. Right through these field visits for wildlife census, corridor surveys, anti-poaching operations or orientation camps, we have been discovering Nature and its agents more meaningfully.
In such sojourns, forest staff, officers and guides often accompany us. We get chance to hear their stories, see them in action and equally confront their challenges to gauge how harsh their life could be! Their sense of responsibilities are undaunted by their plight. Away from publicity, at risk to their lives, unheralded, uncared for, underpaid and largely ignored, they are. Yet, they defend our splendid bio-diversity. It is because of these silent foot-soldiers that our wilderness stands are matchless on a four million square kilometer geographic canvas.
They need support desperately, both moral and material. We wished to speak out their success stories to our society.
It is this sense of belonging with these unsung heroes that led us to institute GREEN GUARD Awards, biennially, in our common crusade for conservation.
THE JUNGLEES through this awards scheme strive to identify and honour some of the best teams and individuals (including Media persons, NGO activists, Field Guides) engaged in protecting our country's wildlife heritage, with a view to:
A. Recognise the effective and dauntless services of the field staff of Indian forests towards protecting our National Heritage, often by risking their own lives.
B. Reciprocating their contribution by honouring these unsung heroes with suitable Awards, in cash & equipment which are useful in their daily operations in the forests.
The GREEN GUARD Awards are conferred in five categories (for the Forest Staff & Officers) for outstanding Anti-Poaching Operation, Natural Habitat Conservation, Best Protected Wildlife Reserve and Nature Guide while it also encompass Media Reporting for Wildlife Causes, Corporate support for Wildlife Conservation and Public Awareness Campaign.
Awards will be given for :
Exceptional Individual Performance
Exceptional Team Performance
For the team's / individual's contribution over the past two years.
The GREEN GUARD AWARDS have rolled into tenth year in its stride. Since 2001,180 plus awardees have championed some 14 states of India (a list attached) and Hong Kong have been reconised and awarded, making it the largest biennial awards scheme of the land.
A look back at the last two award events made us even more purposeful. Till date, over 220 forest staff from 14 states have been conferred awards. In our humble endeavour,
good wishes have showered on us by all section of people from policy makers to poor forest dwellers. Words of the Green Guards' heroic deeds have spread beyond the borders of India.