GUWAHATI: In a move to foster harmonious coexistence between villagers and wild elephants, a state-of-the-art solar-powered fence spanning 1.2 km was inaugurated in Borogopal Part 3 village in Meghalaya’s West Garo Hills district.
The fence aims to mitigate human-wildlife conflict by providing a protective barrier against wild elephants that frequently roam the area. Installed by biodiversity organisation, Aaranyak and British Asian Trust with support from the Darwin Initiative (UK Aid), the fence is anticipated to secure lives and property in the region.
The local community of Borogobal, and Borogobal Solar Fence Management Committee, drew an enthusiastic crowd of around 70 attendees, including women from Borogobal village for the ceremonial ribbon-cutting that was performed by Belenda Stewart Cox of British Asian Trust, UK, in the presence of Meghalaya Forest Department representatives.
During the event, a memorandum of understanding (MOU) was also signed, officially handing over the fence to the local community and the fencing committee.
Belenda elaborated on the community’s roles and responsibilities in maintaining the fence.
To mark the occasion, children from the village performed Rabha traditional dance, adding cultural significance to the event. The villagers, expressing their gratitude and joy, felicitated officials from British Asian Trust and the Aaranyak team with traditional Rabha Pajar and treated them to a sumptuous traditional lunch.
The Aaranyak team, comprising Anjan Baruah, Nipul Chakma, Subhas Rabha, Ripunjoy Nath, Rupam Gayary, Bijoy Kalita, along with the village champion Naveen Rabha, RRU members from Hatogaon and Borogobal, and members of the fencing committee, actively facilitated and participated in the programme.