Indian Forest Staffer Becomes Only Asian to Win Int’l Ranger Award

Other winners of the prestigious award were from Latin America, Africa and Eastern Europe.

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Image of Rajaji Tiger Reserve used for representation purpose.
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A range officer deployed at Motichur range of Rajaji Tiger Reserve (RTR), Mahinder Giri, has won the prestigious International Ranger Award, becoming the only ranger from Asia to do so.

The award was announced for 10 professionals from across the world by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and World Commission on Protrected Area (WCPA) for their “contribution towards conservation”.

Giri won the award for his efforts in curbing human-wildlife conflict in and around RTR and for his role in the ongoing translocation of tigers from Corbett Tiger Reserve to RTR.

Congratulating Giri, Union Minister for Environment Prakash Javadekar tweeted: “I heartily congratulate range officer Mahinder Giri, of Rajaji Tiger Reserve for being the only ranger from Asia to win the prestigious International Ranger Award for his contribution towards conservation.”

Indian Forest Staffer Becomes Only Asian to Win Int’l Ranger Award

WHO IS MAHINDER GIRI?

A resident of Bahadarabad village in Uttarakhand’s Haridwar, Giri started working in the forest department in his early twenties, according to The Times of India.

His father Rameshwar Dayal Giri, who was a forest guard at the Motichur range, was trampled to death by an elephant in 1996. A year later, Giri was given the job on compensatory grounds.

Giri is now in his 50s and, according to TOI, he was happy to have received international recognition for his work.

“By conserving the forests, we are actually saving human lives, not just that of animals and trees. That’s why I have dedicated my life to the cause.”
Mahinder Giri told TOI   

ABOUT THE AWARD

According to TOI, a total of 113 nominations from 43 different countries were sent. Other winners of the prestigious award were from Latin America, Africa and Eastern Europe.

As per TOI, the winners will get a uniform patch and their employing organisations will get $10,000 (Rs 7,26,150) as prize money, which can be used to support the work of the winners and the their teams.

The World Wide Fund for Nature says that the use of the prize money can include:

  • Buying essential supplies or equipment
  • Providing training
  • Providing insurance
  • Supporting the family of a deceased ranger
  • Other ranger welfare activities

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