The Northeastern region of India, often referred to as the “Green Gold” region, boasts extensive bamboo reserves, with approximately 28 percent of India’s bamboo forests situated here although it is only about 8% of the country’s total geographical area.
In a bid to raise awareness and promote the diverse uses of bamboo, the Nagaland Bamboo Development Agency (NBDA) marked World Bamboo Day on 18 September 2023 at the Nagaland Bamboo Resource Centre in Sovima, Chumoukedima.
The event featured the recognition of outstanding contributions to the bamboo industry. Mhaleu Metha and Yimkum from Aitlenden, Tuli, Mokokchung, were honored with the prestigious Bamboo Entrepreneur Award 2023 and Bamboo Self-Help Group (SHG) Award 2023, respectively.
Principal Secretary & Development Commissioner, R Ramakrishnan IAS, serving as the Chief Guest, made significant announcements during the celebration. He revealed the NBDA’s plans to establish an integrated bamboo park with the assistance of funding agencies and set up a bamboo pulp production center. Currently, the agency is in the process of establishing a state-of-the-art cane and bamboo technology park at the Nagaland Bamboo Resource Centre.
Ramakrishnan emphasized the agency’s commitment to harnessing bamboo’s vast potential and benefits, aligning with the guidelines of the National Bamboo Mission under the Government of India. He highlighted the NBDA’s recent achievement, receiving the Excellent Achievement Award at the International Agriculture & Horti Expo held in New Delhi in July.
Expressing gratitude to artisans and entrepreneurs who have embraced bamboo as a livelihood, Ramakrishnan outlined the agency’s goals, which include enhancing the skills of bamboo artisans, facilitating effective product marketing, and thereby bolstering the community’s overall economy through technological intervention and skill development.
He also underscored the NBDA’s marketing strategy, emphasizing collaboration with private marketing entities and entrepreneurs, which has been making significant progress. He called for active participation from entrepreneurs to ensure the agency’s ambitious plans for bamboo industry promotion through various schemes and programs come to fruition.
“The focus on bamboo in the North East is crucial due to the region’s abundant bamboo resources, the traditional knowledge of bamboo among its people, and the rich culture and lifestyle associated with bamboo,” stated Nuzota Swuro, Chairman of NBDA.
The event commenced with the hoisting of the World Bamboo Day flag at the NBRC Office Complex, led by the Special Guest, Principal Secretary & Development Commissioner, R Ramakrishnan, IAS. Following this, a warm welcome address was delivered by Tarep Imchen, IAS, the Mission Director of NBDA.
A presentation on the significance of ‘World Bamboo Day’ was then provided by Er Vezota Khusoh, a member of the NBDA team.