15 years ago Satyendra Manjhi vowed to plant 10, 000 trees on the barren wasteland on the river Phalgu in Bihar. Today, the area is a thriving Guava orchard producing tons of fruits every season, not to forget the ecological transformation it has brought.
Hailing from a small village Imaliyachak, in the Belaganj block area of Gaya district; the famous "Mountain Man", Dashrath Manjhi, inspired Satyendra Manjhi. It was Dashrath Manjhi who advised him to plant trees to turn barren land into a fertile one.
" I still remember the day when Dashrath Manjhi had visited me all those years ago. Baba Dashrath Manjhi used to travel a lot and guide villagers on bringing a change in the society. This area was a wasteland. He asked me to plant trees. Social development can start from our own land leading to the development of the country. He showed me a way, and I did it. "
Initially, Satyendra had to face many problems from watering the saplings to keeping the grazing animal away. But grit and determination yielded results, and today this beautiful guava orchard with 10,000 trees is reaping profit. The orchard has Allahabad variant guava many seeks and is considered of the highest quality.
Satyendra efforts have paid off. His work has been recognised by the Government of Bihar. Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has appointed him as an erstwhile member of the Child Protection Commission. he is also a Senate member at the University of Magadh. Manjhi still continues to take care of his orchard.
His work has earned him respect from all over the world. People have only praises and good things to say about him.
To quote a few comments here, "He might not have more knowledge about everything, but his work is full of honesty. What inspiring work. Well done. Real environmentalist," one user said.
"We have taken him as an inspiration."
Manjhi says, "Recognition for my work and proper reward would be when citizens of this country take up similar projects. It would be difficult in the beginning, but nothing is impossible."
Written By: Tabassum Jawed