Sunderlal Bahuguna, popularly known for the Chipko movement, took his last breath on Friday at the AIIMS in Rishikesh after battling Covid-19. He was 94.
Died due to Covid
Bahuguna, a veteran environmentalist, was admitted to AIIMS in Rishikesh on May 8 for treatment of Covid-19. The condition of his health worsened on Thursday night and he lost the battle to the deadly virus at 12:05 pm on Friday.
President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, among others condoled the death of Bahuguna.
“He manifested our centuries-old ethos of living in harmony with nature. His simplicity and spirit of compassion will never be forgotten. My thoughts are with his family and many admirers,” Modi said.
Passing away of Shri Sunderlal Bahuguna Ji is a monumental loss for our nation. He manifested our centuries old ethos of living in harmony with nature. His simplicity and spirit of compassion will never be forgotten. My thoughts are with his family and many admirers. Om Shanti.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) May 21, 2021
The Chipko movement
Chipko here means “to hug”. In the 1970s, when the reckless cutting of trees started affecting people’s livelihoods, villagers in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli began to protest. When the lumberjacks arrived, a girl saw them and informed the village heads. Women in large groups came out and halted the lumbermen by hugging the trees despite being threatened.
Mr. Bahuguna gave a direction to the movement and his call to then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi resulted in a 15-year ban on chopping green trees in 1980.