Bird-friendly villagers of Vedanthangal celebrate Deepavali sans crackers
The Vedanthangal bird sanctuary is situated near Maduranthakam surrounded by the Vedanthangal lake and is spread across 29.5 hectares.
CHENNAI: The villagers of Vedanthangal are celebrating Deepavali in silent mode without bursting crackers that create sound affecting the migratory birds roosting and nesting in the Vedanthangal and Karikilli sanctuary in Chengalpattu district.
The Vedanthangal bird sanctuary is situated near Maduranthakam surrounded by the Vedanthangal lake and is spread across 29.5 hectares. Migratory birds from countries like Australia, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, China, Pakistan and Myanmar visit Vedanthangal and traditionally the villagers do not burst crackers near the bird sanctuaries.
Usually, the birds visit Vedanthangal from October to May every year. The officials said that since there is not enough water in the lake the count of birds visiting the sanctuary has decreased and now there are around 3000 birds that have arrived so far.
"Since the Deepavali festival is falling during the nesting season the villagers of Vedanthangal avoid sound crackers. The villagers also adopt a resolution in this regard and those with kids may go in for indoor crackers without any sound and less smoke and those who want to burst crackers are advised to travel outside Vedanthangal village," explained a forest department official.
"The Vedanthangal villagers are sensitive about migration and the related to ecotourism revenue to the village. Bursting of crackers during the temple festivals is also banned during the month of October-May season," said S Sriram, an avid bird watcher.
The villagers know that Vedanthangal is an ecological hotspot and traditionally they do not burst crackers and this has been the practice at least for more than five decades, he added.