Saving Demoiselle Cranes, Khichan, Rajasthan

by Rana & Sugandhi Belur
Sevaram Malli Parihar

Chosen as 'Picture of the Week'

Conservation is often about one person stepping up and taking the initiative. If not for Sevaram Malli Parihar's valiant and tireless efforts, hundreds of demoiselle cranes would still be killed by electrical wires in Khichan village, Rajasthan.

Every year, thousands of Demoiselle Cranes visit Khichan village in the Rajasthan desert during winter. They arrive by October-November and stay on till the end of March. Khichan and the areas around were filled with open high tension wires. Every time these beautiful cranes flew, they would come in contact with these high tension wires and die. The images show such electrocuted cranes.

A Khichan native — Sevaram Malli Parihar — took it upon himself to get these high tension wires removed. He filed complaints with the Deputy Collector of Phalodi, the Rajasthan High Court and Rajasthan Electicity Board (REB) to remove these wires. In retaliation, a fine of Rs. 4,27,890 was levied against him by the REB! Along with the Rajasthan Forest Department, he fought the fine and won. The poles and high tension wires were removed. He has also worked with the REB to insulate all electricity wires passing through the village of Khichan.

For his tireless efforts in conserving the demoiselle cranes and other wildlife around Khichan, Sevaram has been honoured with several awards including the Sanctuary RBS Wildlife Service Award in 2008.

About the author

Rana & Sugandhi Belur
Rana and Sugandhi are Bangalore-based nature and wildlife lovers.


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