Assam: NGO equips BTR foresters with GPS navigation methods


Frontline foresters in Udalguri district of Bodoland Territorial Region (BTR) are now better equipped to take on poachers and anti-social elements in their area of operation.

The law enforcement monitoring team under the Tiger Research and Conservation Division of Aaranyak, a frontline biodiversity conservation organisation of Northeast, recently conducted a training programme on the basics of GPS (global positioning system) and learning patrol navigation using GPS for frontline forest staff of Mazbat Range Office of Dhansiri Division.

Altogether 15 frontline foresters participated in the training conducted by following all the prescribed COVID-19 protocols.

N.K Bordoloi, the divisional forest officer of Dhansiri Division, Udalguri had requested Aaranyak to conduct the training after identifying the need for GPS training for the frontline staff in executing their law enforcement patrols effectively and record observations from their patrolling duty efficiently and accurately.

The training started with a classroom presentation at Mazbat Range Office premises on basic introduction to GPS and its different functionalities by Prosenjit Sheel, a senior project officer with Aaranyak and the practical sessions were assisted by Pronit Basumatary and Gayatri Dutta from Aaranyak.

In addition to the GPS basics, the frontline foresters were trained to perform patrol navigation using GPS which was new to them. Besides, lessons on area calculations by using GPS devices were imparted.

Patrollers liked “the patrol navigation using the GPS” part and expressed that the training would be immensely helpful for them to navigate to a point effectively and accurately.

They highlighted the training need of this nature for more frontline staff and requested Aaranyak to conduct at least two refresher GPS training programmes in a year.

(Edited by Ibankyntiew Mawrie)

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