Members of the Guras Conservation Team, informing a truck driver in Surkhet of their initiative to conserve rhododendrons in this recent picture.
SURKHET, Jan 27: Alarmed by the gradual loss of the rhododendron area in the northern part of the district, local youths have come together for the conservation of the national flower. Recently formed ‘Guras Conservation Team’ has decided to control the haphazard plucking of the beautiful flowers.
“This committee has been formed for the conservation of rhododendron. Now, it is not going to go unnoticed if anyone plucks the flower and further contributes to its loss,” said Lokendra Rokaya of Lekhagau, coordinator of the conservation team.
“We must conserve this plant anyhow,” he added. The northern part of Surkhet is well known for the flower. However, in lately visitors and locals’ irresponsible behavior have put the plant on high risk. The team was formed in presence of all the stake holders including Nepal Police.
According to Rokaya, the club has been running sensitization programs for making the general public aware of the efforts and after a week the police will take actions against those not abiding by the conservation guidelines. The move has come at a time when the season of blooming of the flower is around the corner. Thousands of visitors are expected to land in the area by the end of February.
“They come here to watch the flower. But few leave the flowers unharmed,” said Assistant District Administration Officer Ganga Prasad Neupane. He added that the locals’ initiative for the conservation of the flower is more than welcome and very appreciable.
“From our side, we are fully committed towards the cause,” he stated.
Neupane further maintained that the region’s identity is closely knitted with the flower. And if the ongoing loss of the flower continues, identity of the place would be endangered. “The beauty of rhododendron is the identity of this locality. If due steps are not taken, this wont be last forever,” he said.