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Appiko Movement History Background, Objective and Causes

The Appiko Movement is an Indian environmental movement centered around forests, and it mostly affects the Uttara Kanada district of Karnataka, which is located in the Western Ghats region. The forest department’s long-standing policy of encouraging monoculture teak plantations after clearing existing mixed semi-evergreen forests for clear-cutting is what gave rise to the movement. The purpose of this essay is to provide information on the Appiko movement and how it relates to the IAS Exam.

Appiko Movement

  • In the Western Ghats of Karnataka, in the Uttara Kannada area, the Appiko Movement was founded in 1983.
  • Similar to the Chipko movement, which had its roots in the Garhwal Himalayan area of Uttarakhand in 1973, this movement sought to safeguard forests from exploitation.
  • Men, women, and kids from the Salkani community took up tree-hugging as a means of saving the Kalase forest in September 1983.
  • The action, headed by environmentalist Panduranga Hegde, forced contractors and the state forest agency to stop felling trees.
  • Appiko is the Kannada word for “hugging,” hence the movement is called Appiko Chaluvali or Chalewali in the local language.
  • The Appiko Andolan was successful in educating the villagers of the Western Ghats about the ecological risks that commercial and industrial interests presented to their forests, which are essential for their subsistence.

Background of Appiko Movement

Know more about the Appiko Movement in detail, in the below section we have added its background.

  • In August 1983 the forest department was asked to stop felling in the Bilegal forest under the Hulekal range by the inhabitants of Sirsi Taluk, Uttara Kannada.
  • The contractors carried on clear-cutting natural forests while the forest department disregarded the residents’ cries for assistance.
  • The forest department’s neglect caused serious soil erosion and water resource depletion, among other negative repercussions that the people had to deal with.
  • Residents of Salkani village lost access to the only surviving forest patch, which supplied biomass for fuelwood, fodder, and honey.
    Significant losses were also incurred by farmers who grew spices in Uttara Kannada and relied on forest leaf manure.

Objectives of the Appiko Movement

The three main objectives of the Appiko Movement are:

  • Preservation of the existing forest cover.
  • Regeneration of trees on deforested land.
  • Sustainable utilization of forest resources, prioritizing conservation efforts.

Impact of the Appiko Movement

  • The Appiko movement, which challenges the state, stands for people’s empowerment by asserting their rights to acquire food and natural resources for subsistence.
  • It brought attention to the environmental risks that commercial and industrial interests pose in southern India.
  • In the Sirsi region, 1.2 million trees were planted between 1984 and 1985 in answer to the movement’s demand for planting trees on cleared regions.
  • The Appiko movement maintained chances for natives to make a living by protecting vital life sources such as bamboo trees, which the people used to make and sell handcrafted goods.
  • The Appiko movement, which aims to create a sustainable society that balances the demands of humans and the environment, reintroduced Gandhi’s protest and mobilization techniques, much like the Chipko movement did.

Methods of Appiko Movement

  • To increase awareness, the Appiko movement employed diverse tactics such as folk dances, performances in remote forests, street dramas, and foot rallies accompanied by slide exhibitions.
  • Kannada translations of the movement’s well-known slogan, “save, grow, and use forest resources rationally,” were Ubsu (“save”), Belesu (“grow”), and Balasu (“rational use”).

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When did the Appiko movement take place?

The Appiko movement began on September 8, 1983, when locals organised under the leadership of environmentalist Panduranga Hegde to protest the felling of trees in the Salkani forest in the Sirsi district of Karnataka.

Who was the leader of the Appiko movement?

The leader of the Appiko movement was Panduranga Hegde, who organised residents of the Salkani forest in Karnataka to protest and protect by hugging trees in a nonviolent manner.

Who started the Appiko movement?

Environmental activist Panduranga Hegde and native people in Karnataka started the Appiko movement. The movement's name, Appiko, means "hug" in Kannada, representing protecting trees by hugging them.

What are the methods of the Appiko movement?

The Appiko movement was an environmental movement that began in September 1983 in the Karnataka district of Uttara Kannada and raised awareness through various strategies such as folk dances, interior forests, street dramas, and foot rallies, among others.

Which environmental movement occurred in Karnataka?

The Appiko movement was an environmental movement with similar methods to the Chipko movement, which began in September 1983 in Karnataka's Uttara Kannada district.

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