Dharani Dutt Foundation (DDF), registered under Indian Trust Act 1882, is working on environmental issues, social empowerment and animal welfare. The Project is instituted in small, remote village – “Saiklebari” in district Pauri of Uttarakhand. Saiklebari is located on the banks of a seasonal river -”Been”, that confluence with the holy river Ganga at Haridwar.
The village Saiklebari is located equidistant - approximately 25 kms from the holy twin cities of Rishikesh and Haridwar, traversing off road, on the river bed, crossing rivulet in between, crisscrossing and meandering through parts of lesser Himalayas.
The terrain along with rich flora and fauna of various shades makes the short journey, of about an hour, a thrilling and adventurous experience.
Located on the periphery of Rajaji National Park and Tiger Reserve, the area surprises, at times, with spotting of deers (Spotted Deer – (Chital) - Axis axis, Barking Deer (Kakar) – Muntiacus muntjac, Large Deer - Sambar), birds of various hues and colours, and for some fortunate a sudden sighting of Elephas maximus indicus (the Indian Elephant) makes the day.
DDF with social and animal welfare – as it’s prime objective intends to facilitate, help build and develop a system that promises of healthy environment and sustainable livelihoods. “Back to the Roots” is DDF’s way of looking forward by falling back on the traditional values on age old customs and practices of living in harmony with nature. Respecting each and every dimension of ecosystem has been at the core of indigenous societies across the globe. Practicing agriculture, cattle rearing, judicious exploitation of resources from nearby forests without disturbing the ecology has been more because of firm belief in co-existence, because of their appreciation and in-depth understanding of mother-nature.
With time and with expansion of family responsibilities the small land holding and traditional agricultural practices has given rise to various challenges. In the absence of proper environmentally sensitive ideas, technological inputs - sustaining livelihood became an onerous task. It has been realized time and again that age old practices in the domain of agriculture, horticulture, animal husbandry needs subtle tweaking, little innovations – be it in the technological sphere or in the form of ensuring backward and forward linkages without compromising on eco-friendliness. This DDF believes, can be implemented sincerely judiciously by planning eco-sensitive interventions.
Interaction, exchange of ideas, learning from one’s experience paves way for updating and adopting new approach, skills. DDF invites people from different walks of life, from various locations, professionals to come, visit our lab, share and gain, and help in evolving a commune that prefers living in sync with nature sustainably. The whole idea is about “Remaining Environmentally Sensitive”, about “Minimizing Carbon Footprints”. “Back to the Roots” offers great opportunity for the nature lovers to harmonize with nature, and to rejuvenate. It’s an opportunity that allows them to observe rural life from close quarters, to learn and share. A small hiking here and there, bird watching, star gazing in the clear sky, a day indulgence in river rafting in Ganges, a day visit to twin cities of Haridwar and Rishikesh are added advantages.