‘Voice of the voiceless’ is the primary objective of – RAKSHA, an organisation helping in protecting and working for the rights and welfare of animals and birds. Manan Tholia Jain, the president, Raksha talks about these voiceless animals and his inspiration behind this organisation! He shares his own personal experience that motivated him to work in the sector of animal protection. He also lays focus on how humans are hurting these voiceless creatures amidst of celebrating festivals like Makar Sankranti, and how we can adopt simple measures and help save their lives. He also talks about climate change and its impact on migratory birds in the case of Sambhar Lake. Let’s dig deeper into what he has to say about his inspiration, the measures to be taken & about the work of Raksha!
MANAN – Hello I am Manan, president Raksha, Jaipur. Raksha is a Jaipur based organisation working since 2003 to safeguard the rights of injured animals and birds. The major motto of the organisation is to be the voice of the voiceless. Raksha started in 2003 primarily with bird helpline then we entered into snake helpline. Our helpline is a free helpline where people can call and ask for a volunteer to come and rescue the bird or animal that is being rescued and then released back into the wild after its fine. Recently we started with the animal helpline and we are rescuing all the injured animals in Jaipur without any boundaries and doing all the treatments with another organisation in support right now. If we talk about Jaipur, there was a recent truck mass tragedy in India that was Sambar Avian emergency, where we rescued around 1000 birds. Apart from that 18-1900 birds died. And out of the 1000 birds rescued, they were treated and 60 percent of them flew back, this was because of quick action and support from society. Then there are a lot of advocacy things when there are cruelties happening like slaughtering of cows & camels, Raksha enters into those advocacy and we do that as our motto. And being the voice of those voiceless creatures we come up in these areas.
NITIN – So Manan, can you provide with some statistics like so far how many birds and animals you have rescued.
MANAN – So far every year we have an average of around 1000 birds which are rescued and treated. Previously when primarily the organisation started, we were not having any support of doctors, that organisation was started with the motif of rescuing birds, however the founder realised that he cannot do anything and those 13 birds he rescued died in his hands. He then reached out to Jaipur based colleges and got some veterinary support.
And then we started the organisation in a proper way, and that was the first time there was a bird treatment camp in Jaipur. Every year it sets up at the south gate of Ramniwas Bagh, that’s the centre point at the time of Makar Sankranti, from where we do all our operations at the time of Makar Sankranti. Gradually from the 100 percent of un-recovered area, as in the case of those 13 birds, now we are on a level where we can rescue 1000 birds, and out of those we are able to save 600 birds that can fly back and the remaining 200 birds survive and help the other baby birds from the existing resources. We are constantly trying to upgrade pur resources.
NITIN – So Manana, talking about Makar Sankranti, it’s an important occasion for all the north indians, but it does create a different impact on birds and other animals. So what’s your appeal for that.
MANAN – My appeal is that I obviously salute every festival and even believe in celebrating each and every festival. Talking about Makar Sanktranti, it’s an avian emergency for the birds. We are just focusing on flying kites and neglecting the fact that the birds are getting injured. Talking about Jaipur only apart from other areas in the area, there are a lot of camps getting established. There is a ratio of around 5000 birds getting injured and a lot more birds that are not getting treated.
So that’s the number, if we can just take three things in our minds;
- Not flying kites in the morning and evening time, when birds come out and move back into their house. We can reduce the number in a large way.
- Not using Chinese manjha which is being banned by the government as its creating a big tragedy.
- Trashing up these manjhaas entangled around terraces or trees into bins.
NITIN – Definitely Manan, I really believe what appeals you have made, will create a lot more impact to people in general and make them a bit more aware of their actions. Why or how those actions are causing a negative impact on those voiceless actions! Talking more about it, can you tell me what’s your motivation factor? What made you do all this? I am sure that you also have a job to do, but doing social service for animals that definitely have a story behind it? So, what’s your story?
MANAN – So it was 2013 when I found an injured bird in my house & I was not able to find anything, then I did a lot of research on facebook and instagram and I got the helpline number of Raksha. They wanted me to drop that bird to the shelter, but I didn’t know how to rescue the bird. Within 20 min the volunteer came and rescued that bird. However I was shocked to see the pigeon bleeding with wings injured, and was highly shocked. And I was kind of a person who used to fly kites for one and a half months from daytime to evening and this changed his habit of kite flying.
I decided to volunteer at Raksha and gradually I felt that it can grow in different areas. Then I became the head of volunteers and now I am leading the organisation as the president.
NITIN – Manan I am definitely inspired and I will make sure and other people aware about what a celebration can cause to the voiceless. I also appeal to all the people, please remember all the 3 things which Manan has told, don’t fly in daytime and evening, don’t use chinese manjha and if you can then avoid kite flying, it can definitely help saving many lives.
Let’s celebrate this Makar Sankranti not only for humans but also for all the voiceless animals.
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