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Meet discusses project to make Majuli plastic-free

 GUWAHATI, Feb 16 - A panel discussion on ‘Role of Heritage in Zero Carbon Footprint in Majuli’ took place at the Conference Hall of Cotton University on February 15, stated a press release issued here today.

The discussion, chaired by Prof Chandan Kumar Sharma, head of the Department of Sociology at Tezpur University, assessed the activities of a team working on this issue in Majuli for the last two years.

Experts from Queen University Belfast (QUB), UK; filmmakers, activists and scholars from Assam are part of the team working on a project under the aegis of the UKRI GCRF Global Impact Accelerator Awards.

The project is focusing on making Majuli free of single-use plastics, the widespread use of which during festivals and by tourists is posing a threat to the ecosystem of the river island.

With this objective, the team led by Dr M Satish Kumar of QUB launched a campaign toward creating community awareness during the Raas festival in Majuli from in November 2018. As part of this initiative, installation of artwork co-created with the local Mising community, song and dance competition among children, storytelling, etc., were organised to raise awareness about the negative effects of single-use plastics.

The campaign was supported by the Dakhinpat Sattra and the Uttar Kamalabari Sattra. During the Raas festival, a ‘Plastic-Free Stall’ was installed in Dakhinpat Sattra, which showcased examples of non-plastic products such as clay-based, bamboo-based and wood-based traditional and heritage-related items.

This also highlighted the potential of skill development and livelihood options as part of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A total of 500 jute bags were also distributed during the event.

During February 11-16, 2019, a campaign was launched to co-create ‘community champions’ or ‘captains’ in each village who will drive the plastic-free campaign.

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