By Our Reporter
SHILLONG: Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma has expressed concern over the environmental degradation in and around Cherrapunjee while emphasizing on restoration of the ecosystem of the area.
Addressing the closing function of the three-day Cherrapunjee Indigenous Festival on Sunday, Dr Sangma called upon people to extend their cooperation in preserving the environment ‘which is one of the unique selling points of the State’.
“We should explore renewable sources of livelihood rather than exploiting the non-renewable resources which will ultimately turn the land barren and also cause environmental problems,” he said.
“There is a need to involve communities in promoting tourism in the State,” he said, adding that the Government is coming up with the Integrated Basin Development and Rural Livelihoods Programme to ensure sustainable benefits to the people and to confront poverty and backwardness head on.
Dr Sangma also released the photo-journal, Milestone in Pictures – Saluting women empowerment, published by Meghalaya Rural Development Society East Khasi Hills, a magazine which acknowledges the role of women in improving livelihood in rural areas. The journal was released on the sideline of IFAD’s Joint Review Mission in the State.
The three-day Festival witnessed varieties of programmes ranging from traditional music, handicraft, and cultural shows including rock music and fashion shows.
This is the second edition of the Festival, an initiative by Sub-divisional office in collaboration with other government departments, Meghalaya Rural Development Society (MRDS) EKH and Khatarshnong Socio Organisation. The three-day event attracted a many domestic and international tourists.
Local legislator Dr PW Khongjee and several Government officials were present at the closing function.