GUWAHATI, Dec 11: A vibrant exhibition unfolded in Dibrugarh district of Assam, where women from Tanti Pather, Konwabam, and Kamargaon villages displayed high-quality handloom products and homemade edibles. This showcase marked a successful outcome of the collaborative initiative by Aaranyak and British Asian Trust, aiming to reduce villagers’ dependence on forest-based products for the sake of wildlife habitat conservation.
The exhibited products included traditional Assamese handloom items like mekhela chador, eri shawl, gamosa, stoles, along with various pickles and baked goods. The visiting British Asian Trust officials, Belinda Stewart Cox and Auro Shashwat, joined the Aaranyak team led by senior scientist Dr Bibhuti Prasad Lahkar and senior conservation biologist Dr Alolika Sinha, among others.
This initiative, sponsored by the Darwin Initiative (UK Aid), supports villagers with alternative livelihood options, discouraging reliance on forest resources. The goal is to foster coexistence with wild elephants by promoting sustainable practices. The exhibition involved 35 beneficiaries, and the event included an interactive session between the beneficiaries and officials from British Asian Trust and Aaranyak, engaging over 70 participants.