‘Rain saved wildlife and trees’, says forest official who won hearts for dancing in rain-hit Similipal
- A massive forest fire devastated large tracts of the Similipal biosphere reserve in the Mayurbhanj district of Odisha.
Snehalata Dhal, the Odisha forest official whose dance in rain went viral said she was dousing the flames at Similipal biosphere reserve and started dancing in joy when the rain came pouring, saving the reserve’s wildlife and trees.
“Two days ago, a fire broke out in my area, in Similipal. I thought I would have to stay here for long. While we were dousing the fire, it started raining. I started dancing with joy. Rain saved wildlife and trees," she told ANI.
A massive forest fire devastated large tracts of the Similipal biosphere reserve in the Mayurbhanj district of Odisha. It was finally brought under control on March 9, two weeks after it had started towards the end of February. Sandeep Tripathy, who has been tasked with suggesting ways for containing the rising number of forest fires in the state, told HT that the core area containing wildlife has escaped unscathed from the blaze.
He also said that two teams of Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force and four fire brigade teams had been deployed in the areas of Barehipani, Gudugudia, Talabandha, Kendumundi, Chahala, and Nawna. Dhal was a member of one such teams, dispatched to bring the fire under control.
“The forest fire in Similipal is now almost contained. The core area with precious wildlife has not been impacted much, with fire mostly confined to the peripheral areas of the Similipal Tiger Reserve. Two teams of Odisha Disaster Rapid Action Force have been sent to the reserve," Tripathy said to HT.
Local youth and student wings of the ruling Biju Janata Dal joined hands with the villagers and forest officials to extinguish the fire in the biosphere reserve, reported news agency PTI. The raging inferno was finally brought under control by mother nature’s gracious downpour, becoming the cause for Dhal’s celebration.