Environmentally Sustainable Practices of the Garhwal Region with Specific Reference to the Indigenous Communities and Specific Tribes - A Critical Study

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Dr. Lakshmi Priya Vinjamuri, Dr. Rajesh Bahuguna


The sustainability of the environment is a phenomenon that is directly related and specifically attributable to the practices of a region. Retaining the remote past practices which are the customs and traditions of the present day, in the contemporary era is a commendable aspect in the times of dynamic climate change, and urbanization. In a world that is facing the challenge of pollution and poverty, depletion, degradation, deterioration and diminishing natural resources, practices focused on environmental sustainability should not only be identified and recognized but also be protected by a legal framework that ensures their sustenance and survival.

The recognition of the environmentally sustainable practices should be legally validated through a legal and regulatory framework that not only offers a blanket protection but also creates an opportunity to incentivize the creators as also the retainers of the sustainable practice that contributes to environmental sustainability. The various aspects of the Brundtland Report on Sustainable development can be inferred and referred to, that postulate a tight rope walk balance of development and environmental protection.

The paper is a study of the sustainable practices with specific reference to environmental sustainability practiced in the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand, India. The survival of the sustainable practices was ensured and facilitated by the eco-sensitive communities in the hilly Himalayan State of Uttarakhand, specifically the Garhwal region, though the Kumaon region does contribute its share for the protection, conservation and restoration of the environment. The Garhwal region of Uttarakhand is famous not only for the aesthetic and spiritual fervor but also for the environmental sensitivity ingrained and imbibed in the customs, traditions and lifestyle of the people of the region.

The paper is an attempt at critically studying and analyzing the traditional or inherently imbibed and innate lifestyle of the indigenous communities of the region and the identified tribes that ensure the sustenance of the special norms, customs and traditions resplendent with sustainable practices.

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