Nisarg Vidnyan Mandal (NVM)
It is an NGO which has been working towards creating awareness about science & nature amongst students for the last 20-25 years. So far, they have covered more than 1 lakh students from 150 schools & nature clubs. Their awareness programs are based on rainwater harvesting to watershed management, promotion of organic farming and helping small scale businesses depended on agriculture and forestry. NVM was one of the initiators to create awareness about Ganesh Utsav Nirmalya polluting the lakes and every year they post their volunteers to spread more awareness about it during Ganesh Visarjan. NVM is also in the process of declaring a ‘Munia Conservation Reserve’ near Nagpur.
With over 30 years of working with the local forest department, he is an indispensable person when it comes to wildlife rescue. Without any formal training in animal handling or rescue, sheer experience has taught Gunwanta everything he knows today. At times, he has proved to be a better judge of animal psychology than trained experts. His natural instincts about wildlife have helped in tackling situations in unexplored domains. He, merely a forest guard, probably has more wildlife rescue to his name, than quite a few big organizations.
He is a one man army who has been striving to save trees in Nagpur and the highways around it. He has single-handedly filed numerous PILs in the High Court and has been following them for the last few years. In one of the PILs, the Court ordered the State to undertake almost 50 kms of plantation along the highway to compensate for the tree felling for road widening. More than 50,000 trees were planted between Nagpur and Amravati as against 16,000 chopped trees. In another case, almost 40 trees, which were over 100 years old, were saved from being axed and NHAI was forced to implement alternate solutions to construct the highway.