Ananda Kumar Talmilnadu
A scientist with the Mysore-based Nature Conservation Foundation, Ananda Kumar began his wildlife research trying to understand group dynamics of south Indian monkeys. For over a decade now he has been actively involved in conservation of the Asian elephant. He works with a team of dedicated conservation scientists in the Anamalai Elephant Programme and is involved in initiating an elephant information network in collaboration with the Tamil Nadu Forest Department, plantation companies, and the local residents. Ananda Kumars long term work on elephants in the Anamalai hills earned him the Carl Zeiss Wildlife Conservation Award in 2012 and Whitley Award in 2015.
Dr.Pramod Patil Kolhapur, Maharashtra
Dr.Pramod Patil left the confines of a city hospital to become a full time conservationist. He works with the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) on all issues related to the protection of the Great Indian Bustard.A member of the IUCN Species Survival Commission of India, Dr.Patil has helped formulate creative solutions for Central and State governments. He is determined to reverse the decline of the birds by winning the support of local communities, government officials, and experts. Dr.Patil received the Whitley Award in 2015. Considered the Green Oscar, these are awarded annually by the Whitley Fund for Nature (WFN) to recognize and celebrate effective national and regional conservation leaders across the globe.
Sarang Yadvadkar Pune, Maharashtra
An architect and technical Consultant, Sarang is an alumnus of JJ College of Architecture, Mumbai. Settled in Pune since 1987, he is a member of the Planning Committee for the Development Plan of Pune City (Old Limits). For the last 13 years Sarang has been studying issues related to Punes rivers; specifically, the water carrying capacity and pollution due to untreated sewage, encroachments on the riverbeds, and analysis of the Pune Municipal Corporations proposed ‘River Navigation project’. Sarang has filed various cases before the National Green Tribunal (NGT) to save Punes rivers, and won a case against the PMC in the NGT and the Supreme Court against the construction of an 80-foot wide road on the Mutha riverbed.
The Lion Queens of India Gir, Gujrat
The only women forest guards team in India was created in Gir in 2007, by then Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi.Women guards are a great asset when arresting village women who enter the forests to cut prized teak trees. They help the wildlife department deflect allegations of harassment. Currently, there are seven women in GirsSasan division and many more stationed in other parts of the forest. Paucity of leave takes a toll on their family lives but the women are committed to their work.
Dr. Vandana Shiva
She is an Indian scholar and environmental expert. She has written and spoken extensively about advances in the fields of agriculture and food, intellectual property rights, biodiversity, biotechnology, bioethics, and genetic engineering. Trained as a physicist, she later shifted to inter-disciplinary research in science, technology and environmental policy. In 1982, she founded an independent institute – the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology in Dehra Dun and in 1991 Navdanya, a national movement to protect the diversity and integrity of living resources – especially native seed – and to promote organic farming and fair trade. In 2004, Dr. Shiva started Bija Vidyapeeth, an international college for sustainable living in Doon Valley in collaboration with Schumacher College, U.K.
An environmental activist and writer, Bittu Sahgal is the founding editor of Sanctuary Asia, Indias premier wildlife and ecology magazine. A member of the National Board for Wildlife of the Ministry of Environment and Forests, he has been associated with Project Tiger from its inception, and was greatly influenced by Dr. Salim Ali, the famous Birdman of India; Kailash Sankhala, the first Director of Project Tiger; and Fateh Singh Rathore, Field Director, Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve. He is also at the forefront of the battle to protect India from the worst impacts of climate change.
After 23 years in a bank, Suresh took voluntary retirement in 2001 to concentrate on his hobbies – natural history and wildlife photography. Now a full time naturalist, wildlife photographer, filmmaker and writer, he has published several articles and photographs on natural history and conservation in leading magazines. His book on butterflies for children won him State Awards. Suresh collaborated with the BBC Natural History Unit in the making of the film Monsoon Forest (Land of the Tiger series) and David Attenborougs Life of Birds. He has independently made several video documentaries on the natural heritage of Kerala.
WWF-India was established as a charitable trust on 27 November 1969 to stop the degradation of the planets natural environment, and build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature. Rechristened World Wide Fund for Nature-India in 1987, WWF-India has over 40 years of experience in this field. A challenging, constructive, science-based organisation, WWF-India, in keeping with the tenets of its parent organization, addresses issues like the survival of species and habitats, climate change, and environmental education. Over the years, its perspective has broadened to reflect a more holistic understanding of conservation issues facing the country.
Chewang Norphel is an Indian civil engineer from Ladakh who joined the Rural Development Department of Jammu and Kashmir in 1960. He created artificial glaciers by diverting a river into a valley, slowing the stream by constructing checks at lower elevations. This increased the ground-water recharge, rejuvenating the spring and providing water for irrigation. By 2012, He had built 12 artificial glaciers, earning him the nickname Ice Man. Norphels largest glacier at Phuktsey village is 1,000 ft long, 150 ft wide and 4 ft in depth. It can supply water for the entire village of 700 people.
Green Teachers Awards
An avid naturalist, keen nature photographer and author, he is working to popularise natural history and nature conservation in India. Among the books he has authored are Common Indian Wild Flowers, Moths, Butterflies of India, and Incredible Insects. His new book on Indian butterflies, jointly published by Oxford University Press and BNHS has just been released. He is presently the joint editor of Hornbill, BNHSs quarterly natural history magazine, besides serving as its General Manager (programmes). In 2006 he was awarded the prestigious Fulbright Fellowship to study American Environmental NGOs.
A Senior Correspondent for Environment, Women and Child Development with the Maharashtra Times, Chaitralis focus is on augmenting the limited coverage of environmental issues in the regional media. She has reported extensively on issues like climate change, environment conservation, man animal conflict, poaching, effects of water and air pollution on environment, etc. Her in-depth reporting on the Western Ghats, and poaching of animals in the Bhimashankar Wildlife Sanctuary has led to direct action by the Forest Department.