Assam-based ecologist and conservation activist Bibhuti Lahkarhas won the prestigious ‘Heritage Heroes Award’ of theInternational Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).With this, he became the first Asian to win this prestigious environmental award.
- He was presented this award at the IUCN’s ongoing World Conservation Congress in Honolulu, Hawaii.
- From past two decades Lahkar, has been working to save the grasslands, flora and fauna of Manas National Park area. Currently, he is engaged as Manas Landscape Administrator for Aaranyak, an NGO working for biodiversity conservation in northeast India. He has intensively studied grasslands of Manas and is globally recognised as an expert in threatened flora and fauna of the Terai region along southern foothills of the Himalayas. He was also instrumental in connecting Manas Wildlife Sanctuary with the Royal Manas National Park in Bhutan. Connecting them had led to a system of trans-boundary wildlife monitoring which now supports management in entire Manas natural area that spreads across India and Bhutan.
- He also had conducted the first GIS survey of the Manas and his research findings and recommendations were critical component in the Manas Tiger Conservation Plan. IUCN’s Heritage Heroes Award: It aims at recognising “outstanding efforts” of persons around the world in making a difference in the conservation of World Heritage sites in challenging situat.