Conserving the forest, medicinal plants, woods and wildlife of Bastar: Customs that reflect religious sentiments while achieving more – Chhattisgarh

Rashmi Drolia, TNN | Jun 4, 2014, | To read the full story, click here>>

RAIPUR: For tribals residing around Boma hill in Chhattisgarh’s Dantewada district in Bastar, it’s sin to climb or step up on this hill and doing so costs the offender Rs 500.

In a unique style to conserve environment and pay respect to religious sentiments, locals believe that this breast-shaped hill was the chest of the goddess they have been worshipping since years, hence it wasn’t supposed to be climbed or stepped upon.

Located about 25 kilometers from Dantewada near Nelguda village, the virgin hill stands high on banks of Indravati river. “It serves two purposes, one the religious sentiments remain intact and secondly the forest, medicinal plants, woods and wildlife remain safe and conserved. Absolutely untouched,” Parmanand Pujari of Chote Tumnar temple told TOI. Boma in Gondi dialect means breast, he explained the significance of name of the hill and said that the amount of Rs 500 collected from offenders is later utilized during annual ‘mahotsav’ of goddess Mahagauri. […]

While environmentalists believe it was a way of capturing the hill and its products on pretext of religious sentiments, it was of course conserving the environment in the other way. They said there was at least one patch which may remain untouched and wouldn’t be excavated for minerals or forest wood.

From readers’ comments

“Tribal people always protected our enviornment and they satisfied by the minimum requirement for the time being for existence and never in the habit of destroying the environment.”

“In a unique style to conserve environment and pay respect to religious sentiments, locals believe that this breast-shaped hill was the chest of the goddess they have been worshipping since years, hence it wasn’t supposed to be climbed or stepped upon.”

Source: Bastar’s tribal way to preserve environment – The Times of India
Address : http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/home/environment/the-good-earth/Bastars-tribal-way-to-preserve-environment/articleshow/36065503.cms
Date Visited: Wed Oct 08 2014 18:34:00 GMT+0200 (CEST)

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This entry was posted in Accountability, Bastar, Central region – Central Zonal Council, Commentary, Customs, De- and re-tribalisation, Ecology and environment, Forest Rights Act (FRA), Media portrayal, Modernity, Nature and wildlife, Press snippets, Worship and rituals. Bookmark the permalink.