East Himalaya

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Sunderbans from MCCS Aman


  Sunderbans is situated on the lower end of the Gangetic West Bengal, 22.00° N – 89.00° E, at an altitude 0-10 m above sea level and just south of Kolkata. Sunderban covers an area of 4262 sq. kms., where 70 percent is under saline water. Sunderbans is a vast tract of forest and saltwater swamp forming the lower part of the Ganges Delta, extending about 160 miles (260 km) along the Bay of Bengal from the Hooghly River Estuary (India) to the Meghna River Estuary in Bangladesh. Sunderbans spreads over 54 islands and two countries (West Bengal and Bangladesh) and is part of the world's largest delta region.
 The Sunderbans are a part of the world's largest delta formed by the rivers Ganges, Brahmaputra and Meghna. The whole tract reaches inland for 60-80 miles (100-130 km). A network of estuaries, tidal rivers, and creeks intersected by numerous channels, it encloses flat, marshy islands covered with dense forests.

Flora and fauna
True mangrove species-26
True mangrove associates-29
Back mangrove species-29
Families- 40
Species- 84
Royal Bengal tigers: 271 (9december 2001 census)
Others mammal; wild bears, spotted deer, porcupines, otters, monkeys etc.
Reptiles: crocodiles, marines, turtles, snakes, lizards, monitors.
Birds; around 170 species
Fishes; estimated 58 specis
Invertebrates including crabs, molluscs of different kinds.

At present 108 islands 54 are inhabited, the population is about 4.1 millions. A unique religious harmony is observed here among Hindu and Muslims.

West Bengal Tourism Development Corporation has set up tourist lodges in Sajnekhali. In Pakhirala there are some private lodges.the most exepensive and luxurious accommodation in The Sunderbans is at the Sunderbans tiger camp at Dayapur. 

Our excursion to The Sunderbans
We are the students of Modella Caretaker Centre  and School, Fulbari. We were the students 48 in number, with 7 teachers. We started our journey from New Jalpaiguri on 3rd November, 2011.
 Reached sealdah the next day morning by 06:10. We took a small halt for sumtime and then boarded a bus and started a journey for a place called Gadkhali, it took us almost 3 and half hours to reach there, and then we boarded a launch and reached an inhabited island called Bali island. There we resided in a resort, Sunderbans Jungle Camp. The very day we went to the Sajnekhali for taking different permissions and took a look over the island.
The next day that is 5th November we set out early in the morning to visit all the different places of the Sunderbans. we a deer reserve, then all tge different species of plants, most of them were mangroves, we saw the meeting of the river and sea, saw different animals like crocodiles, deer, monkeys, fowls, and birds of different species. At night we saw a special play performed by the local people based on The Banobibi ( the  goddesses of the forest who believed to have protect them). The villagers performed them with great true souls which was very pleasure watching it.
On 6th we visited the Bali village, talked to different people. Asked them of the problem they face. Still they have not received the    electric supply, they depend on the solar energy or the electric generators, and they are dependent on agriculture, fishing, and honey collection for their livelihood. We helped them by giving them some torches, some eatable materials etc. Finally after returning from there we sat out for Sealdah and boarded the train back to New Jalpaiguri.

The visit to The Sunderban was an evergreen journey; it would remain evergreen in my memory. But felt helpless for the villagers, many of them were attacked by the tigers, they did not receive a proper help from the government, they problems during the monsoon season, they lived a poor life, let us all come together and appeal for the help to them to the government. Inspite of this they spent a happy and enjoyable life here. The unity among the local people is very strong.

The place was just fantastic, would surely visit again if i ever get a chance again.
                                                                                                                                                Aman Bindal
                                                               Modella caretaker centre and school, Fulbari, siliguri. West Bengal.


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