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News & Announcement

Himalayan Environment Trust

MINUTES OF MEETING THE MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE OF THE HIMALAYAN ENVIRONMENT TRUST HELD AT THE CLARION COLLECTIONS (THE QUTAB HOTEL) AT 5.00 P.M. ON 10TH JULY, 2013 Present: 1. Captain M.S. Kohli (Chairman) 2. Dr. Karan Singh (Advisor) 3. Mr. Sushil Gupta (Vice Chairman) 4. Mr. D.K. Arya 5. Mr. Bikram Pandey (Nepal) 6. Mr. Maninder Kohli (Managing Trustee) 7. Mr. J.C. Kala 8. Mr. D.K. Suri (Director Administration) 9. Captain Swadesh Kumar 10. Mr. Mandeep Singh Soin 11. Mr. Akhil Bakshi 12. Major Dalbir Singh 13. Col. H.S. Chauhan (President IMF) Regrets: 1. Sir. Chris Bonington (Founder) I am sure you will understand why I can?t attend our AGM, but I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate everyone on their excellent work and wish HET all good fortune in the future. 2. Mr. David Molden (ICIMOD) I will be away from the Office starting from today until 17 July, 2013. Please contact Anju Rana arana@icimod.org for urgent matters. 3. Mr. Basant Raj Mishra (Chairman, Nepal Chapter) It was so nice of you to organize the HET management meeting on the 10 July with such interesting agendas. I love to attend this meeting but, unfortunately I will be in United States. The time and venue was fixed a long time back so it will not be nice to postpone at this time. Therefore, I sincerely apologies for my inability to attend the meeting on 10 July. However, HET Nepal Chapter will definitely support any way in rebuilding of the Gangotri Region (As per the decision of the management committee on 10 July). Once I returned from the States I will take the initiative on this topic and if need be we will invite few committee members of HET from India as well. 4. Mr. Jotvinder Singh (Asst. Director Administration) The Chairman welcomed all those present and requested everyone to pay homage to Late Maurice Herzog, who died on 13.12.2012. Captain Kohli mentioned that Maurice was a great legend and has played a highly significant role in the activities of the HET from its very inception. His death, after Sir Edmund Hillary?s demise is a major lose to the HET. The Chairman recalled the historic gatherings of all trustees at his house in a Chamonix in 1990 and 2000, during 40 year and 50 year celebrations of the Climb of Annapurna I. In his memory, two minutes silence was observed. It was decided to convey this to his wife, Elisabeth Camper. Chairman then said that last meeting of the Management Board was held about eight months ago, on 27th Nov, 2012. There is a need to have frequent meetings to interact with trustees and also review the work. Hence, it was decided to have the meetings once in three months. He said the next meeting of the full board of trustees will be held on 14 Oct. 2013 when HET completes 26 years. Chairman briefly touched on the Uttarakhand devastation and desired to have detailed discussion on the initiative of Mr. Sushil Gupta. DISCUSSION ON THE AGENDA ITEMS After the welcome speech by Chairman, minutes of the last meeting were read out along with the action taken. After the brief discussions minutes were approved. REBUILDING OF GANGOTRI REGION Mr. Sushil Gupta explained about the work being taken up by the Rotary Club to rehabilitate about 32 villages by providing shelter, food and schools. Detailed discussion took place and trustees felt that what is being done by Rotary Club is a long term measure. There is need for immediate help like temporary shelters since more rains are likely to come. Mr. Gupta further informed that Rotary was also planning to take all possible action. Trustees then had detailed discussion as to how HET can contribute in rebuilding the region. It was unanimously felt that in the absence of infrastructure it may not be possible for the HET to take up any work independently. It was therefore decided that HET must work along with Rotary Club. Mr. Maninder Kohli then informed the house that HET was working on supply of smokeless stoves and the field trials done in the past have shown good results. Six stoves, which were sent for trials, the response has been very encouraging. These stoves were of foreign make. He further elaborated that some persons are developing smokeless stoves indigenously, in Faridabad. These stoves are likely to be cheaper and perhaps even better. We will work on this and visit the factory. HET does not have much finance to take up this project especially to help the victims of Uttrakhand. Corporates normally allocate 2% of their budget for CSR. Trustees with their contacts may explore the possibility of getting the support of some corporates. During the discussion on Uttarakhand devastation it was felt there was the need to control pilgrimage tourism. Heavy uprooting of trees, the craze for roads and building of dams in the name of development has taken a big toll of ecology. Development may be essential but balance between development and ecology cannot be over looked. Dr. Karan Singh informed that more than 1300 villages have been washed away and it will be a colossal job to rehabilitate them. It is likely that it may not be possible to rehabilitate the villages at the same place. Therefore, new places have to be searched and villages have to be rebuilt at new locations. More rains and harsh winter will make the task of rehabilitation difficult, unless it is taken on war footings. He desired that a small team under Mr. Sushil Gupta, who is also a Chairman of Gangotri Project, may plan to work on rebuilding of Gangotri and do what ever is possible for the HET. Silver Jubilee Book ? Voice of the Himalaya All efforts are being made to get this book published for release on 14th October, 2013, by National Book Trust of India. Few trustees wanted to know the contents of this book. It was explained that the book contains articles and research work on Himalayan Environment by various persons / organization who are working in the Himalayan region. HET Website Captain Swadesh Kumar explained that be could not spend much time to make the website commercially viable. He shall now spare some time to fulfill his promise. He has few ideas and to implement them some modification in the website will be required. He will discuss this with Mr. Maninder Kohli and Mr. D.K. Suri separately by holding a meeting. He will also follow up action regarding Hyperlink of websites with the Ministries of Tourism, Environment and Forest, ICIMOD and any other organizations required to make the website more popular. HET Newsletter Mr. Maninder Kohli explained that the Newsletter design had been changed. This is reflected in the last two New Letters. In the present design, besides news, a few relevant articles written by persons working in the field have been incorporated. Some trustees informed they had not received the News letter. HET office will send the last letter issued from HET and ensure that these are received by all trustees. It was also desired that the newsletter should be placed on the website. Mr. Maninder Kohli further stated that in future newsletter will be published and mailed every quarterly. New design and its contents were very much appreciated. HET Foundation Day Mr. Sushil Gupta explained that efforts were made to call an eminent person from France but he failed to turn up for the proposed function to be held on 29 May, 2013. HET Talks Mr. Maninder Kohli explained that he had arranged two talks last year and he was working on more talks this year. Invites will be sent to all trustees for any future talks. Edmund Hillary World Fellowship Captain Kohli explained that the book ?Voices of the Himalaya? contains full details of Edmund Hillary World Fellowship. After release of the book, Trustees will be requested to enroll members for the fellowship and as such the fellowship then will become operative. NEPAL CHAPTER Mr. Bikram Pandey, Trustee from Nepal informed the August Members:- Nepal Chapter is being restructured by August 2013. We are including fresh and proactive members in the Chapter. The chapter has coined a new scheme to keep Everest clean. In that we have announced an incentive fee to the working Sherpas for bringing garbage to the base camp and incentive fees can be collected from the respective expedition teams. Same modality was followed in the case of oxygen bottles. Empty bottles were brought by returning yaks and expedition team and dumped in Lukla. During off-season Airlines Flying to Lukla are bringing them on their return journey at a minimal cost. Airlines doing this work are also being given small discount in the cargo rates. This local mechanism or local knowledge has worked miraculously because Everest Region is more or less free of empty bottles. We do it by giving small incentive to the returning Yaks from the Base Camp, returning porters from the Base Camp & returning empty flights from Lukla. This way everybody makes small profit but they all contribute tremendously to the conservation of the Mountain & its environment in Everest Region. ANY OTHER ITEMS Bikram Pandey Vice President Nepal Mountaineering Association proposed that year 2015 be celebrated as the year of Indian Everesters on Everest. Bikram Pandey will bring out new scheme for the Indian Climbers to climb Everest in a very special package which will be cost effective as well as hassle-free climbing activities. Indians can climb Everest, clean Everest on return and run the World's Highest Marathon from Everest Expedition Base Camp to Namche Bazaar. This could become be a very big event for the entire Mountain climbers & sports loving community of the world because this is a Indian Golden Jubilee on Everest where they could also participate to celebrate the Jubilee. This will bring lot of publicity for Himalayan Environment Trust & Nepal Chapter for its cause of environmental discipline in mountain climbing as well as trekking holidays throughout the Himalayan Mountain Regions. Meeting adjourned with a vote of thanks to the chair.


Himalayan Environment Trust

The Himalaya or the Himalayas, as some prefer to call it, is the youngest, the highest and the most beautiful mountain range in the world. Vie


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