Forest Guard Award 2015
The Balipara Special Award to Forest Guard in 2015 went to 6 fearless and courageous guards. Namita Kalita, Dharmistha Medhi Das, Pema Thinley, Amar Sing Deka, Rajen Panika, Sontush A. Sangma. 1) Namita Kalita Namita Kalita – Posted at Ghorakati Range under Kaziranga Park, Namita has proven her mettle on several occasions braving the difficult conditions of the park. Her drive and zeal have led her to show great initiative and excellent leadership qualities. Her dedication was once again highlighted when she tirelessly engaged in rescue efforts during the floods that engulfed Kaziranga recently. 2) Dharmistha Medhi Das Dharmistha Medhi Das – Dharmistha is posted in the Bonda Forest Camp under the Guwahati Wild Life Division and is sincere, brave forest guard who stands out in Kaziranga’s already impressive patrolling line up. She has shown tremendous leadership qualities and presence of mind during her patrolling duties. Her contribution to conservation of the Bonda area is indispensable. 3) Pema Thinley Pema Thinley – Pema Thinley’s multifaceted contribution to conservation through his work as Range Officer in different beats in Bhutan has proven to be invaluable. He has been providing law enforcement and technical guidance to farmers and local government bodies in matters of wildlife and forestry and working to implement human-wildlife conflict mitigation measures. Today, he works as a Range Officer in Tashichholing Range of Samste, Bhutan under the Department of Forest and Park Services, Ministry of Agriculture and Forests, Thimphu. 4) Amar Sing Deka Amar Sing Deka – Courageous and fearless. These adjectives aptly describe Amar Sing Deka’s 25 years of forest service in Kaziranga. Amar first joined Kaziranga National Park as a Home Guard in the late 1990s, and was almost fatally attacked by a buffalo while on duty. But, soon after recovery, he was back in Kaziranga, as a casual worker on protection duty, risking his life fighting poachers. Nothing could keep him away from his beloved park and he continues to protect it with equal zeal even today, in the capacity of a Forest Guard in Western Range, Bagori under Eastern Assam Wildlife Division. His immense knowledge of wildlife and commitment to protecting the park make him an invaluable asset. 5) Rajen Panika Rajen Panika – Rajen Panika’s dedication and tireless service to protection and conservation of Kaziranga has truly made a difference. He joined the Forest Department of Kaziranga National Park in December of 1992 and since then his alert and intuitive presence has helped save several rhinos from being poached. Today he serves as a Forest Guard in Kaziranga. Rajen Panika’s continues his significant efforts to protect Indian rhinos. 6) Sontush A. Sangma Sontush A. Sangma – Thirty years of dedicated service to the Garo Hills of Meghalaya define Sontush A. Sangma’s inspiring career and life. And over the years, his enthusiasm, passion and love for the wilds haven’t waned. He joined the Meghalaya Forest Department in 1985 as a muster roll employee, and today serves as a Forest Guard of Gateman rank in the Balpakram Division, Garo Hills. He has worked on numerous beats and has faced-off with illegal loggers, militants and poachers, always maintaining a calm and steady demeanor, leading his team from the front and ensuring their safety. His name arouses respect and admiration among his colleagues and all those acquainted with him.