The Chipko Movement of India - Tree Huggers Unite!

The Chipko members saving a mighty tree  

The forests of India are a critical resource for the rural people throughout India because of their provision of food, fuel and fodder. They are also revered for soil stabilization, shade and their innate vitality.
As the trees were increasingly cut down for commerce and industry in the late 20th century, Indian villagers used Mahatma Gandhi's method of satyagraha or non-violence resistance to protect these mighty arboreal beings.

In the 1970s and 1980s this resistance known as the Chipko Movement.
The name Chipko came from a word meaning 'embrace': the villagers hugged the trees to save them from the contractors' axes. 


In 1980 The Chipko protests achieved a major victory with a 15-year ban on felling of trees in the Himalayan forests by order of India's then Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi. 

The movement spread to many parts of India and also generated pressure for a natural resources policy sensitive to people's needs and environmental factors. These forests are still protected.

The Chipko Movement was the result of hundreds of decentralized and locally autonomous groups of people..not from the central government.. 

Its activists have primarily been village women. 
Women in small community groups can be a very powerful force - Ecofeminism may be the answer to the environmental problems of the modern world. 


For more: Friends of the Earth International







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