JAMMU, Sept 26: As part of World Environment Health Week celebrations, Sankalp- the CSR committee of Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Sirmaur invited social worker and Padma Shri recipient Dr Prakash Baba Amte for a guest lecture.
He was joined briefly by his wife and fellow Magsaysay Award winner Mandakini Amte. Dr Prakash Amte is the son of the renowned social worker and activist Murlidhar Devidas Amte (commonly known as Baba Amte).
In his speech, Dr Amte spoke of his father’s principles and how after getting inspired by his father, he dedicated his life for the betterment of others, and to deal with issues such as wildlife preservation and maintenance of ecological balance.
Briefing about an incident that occurred during a picnic with his father, soon after graduating from Nagpur’s Government Medical College in 1966, Dr Prakash Amte said that they came across some tribal folks and he along with his father was shocked to see that they were uncomfortable and apprehensive in their presence.
He said that incident inspired him to work for tribal development and thereby in 1973, he initiated the “Lok Biradari Prakalp” project in Hemalkasa for the Madia Gond people in the forests of Gadchiroli district, where he lived and worked for nearly 20 years, slowly gaining the trust of the local people by working whole heartedly with limited resources.
Dr Amte said that at present, he is the caretaker of several orphaned animals including cubs of a leopard, hyneas and bears that were handed over to him by tribals after hunting. It was a result of his hard work that animal hunting decreased and people who initially killed innocent animals for food, now cared for them.
The guest lecture ended with a vote of thanks given by Professor Dr Neelu Rohmetra, Director, IIM Sirmaur, for guiding the students of the institute towards betterment of society.