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Google honours 45th Chipko Movement anniversary with a doodle

Google honours 45th Chipko Movement anniversary with a doodle

The trigger for the modern Chipko movement was the growth in development that Uttar Pradesh witnessed following the 1963 China border conflict.

What does Google say about the movement?

Svabhu Kohli and Viplov Singh are the illustrators of the colourful doodle.

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In the Doodle, women in traditional Garhwali attire can be seen under the moonlight, holding hands with each other to protect the trees from deforestation. Chipko movement found momentum in 1970s and derived its name from the way people embraced trees symbolising protection of forest from being cut.

The Chipko Movement bears significance for several reasons, primarily because the seven-year-long battle forced Indira Gandhi, the then Prime Minister, to ban the felling of trees in India.

The Chipko Movement was set off by a government decision to deal out with the forest land to a sports goods company which one is very required. The Chipko Movement gained traction under Sunderlal Bahuguna, an eco-activist, who spent his life persuading and educating the villagers to protest against the destruction of the forests and Himalayan Mountains.

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The word "Chipko" is Hindi for "to stick to" and the way people expressed solidarity with the movement was by surrounding trees and linking their hands together around it, to physically prevent them from being chopped down. He helped the Movement to gain prominence, through the 5,000-kilometer trans-Himalaya march undertaken from 1981 to 1983, travelling from village to village, gathering support for the movement.

Speaking on the doodle, the official website of the Google said: "The success of this nonviolent, grassroots resistance was felt around the globe, serving as the inspiration for future environmental movements". Women formed the nuclear of the movement, as the group most directly affected by the lack of firewood and drinking water caused by deforestation.

The original movement dates back to the 18th century in Rajasthan where people of Bishnoi community resisted deforestation by embracing them. The movement strongly followed the Gandhian philosophy of nonviolence. The Chipko movement can essentially be called a women's movement.

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