SILIGURI: Suraj Gurung’s Bird Book creates a stir in the literary world

Siliguri, : The year 2003 ended with an exciting experience for book lovers and also good news for nature lovers, travelers and those interested in poetry. ‘A Rustle in the Foliage’, a bird book written by Sikkimese author Suraj Gurung, which breaks new ground, has paved the way for an entirely new genre of nature writing.

A collection of travelogues, anecdotes, essays and poems along with 84 color photographs, this unique bird book gives a unique perspective on the bird world.

‘A Rustle in the Foliage’ is published by Rachana Books and Publications, Gangtok. World-renowned British ornithologist and author Carroll Inskip has written the foreword to the book.

The Birds book is the result of the author’s journey into the world of avifauna, through remote locations in his home state and the hilly areas around Darjeeling and Kalimpong, as he braved rain and cold in search of rare bird species. Trek for hours. Apart from wild birds, the book also depicts common birds in a new light and highlights their distinct personalities.

The author, a travel writer and a wildlife photographer, takes the reader on an unforgettable journey through the lush oak forests of Neora Valley, the alpine rhododendron groves in West Sikkim, the cold desert and hot wetlands of Gurudongmar on the edge of the Tibetan Plateau . Of Gajoldoba of Jalpaiguri.

The book-release event held at Bukant in Salbari was attended by nature lovers, bird photographers as well as eminent literary personalities from Siliguri, Darjeeling and the Himalayas.

Sikkim. The program started with a book review by environmentalist and eco-entrepreneur Utso Pradhan.

In his address, Pradhan said, “The book ‘A Rustle in the Foliage’ talks about sustainable birding by bringing the issue of responsible birding and the use of birdcall playback to the field. Through some of his poems, the author also talks about the need for preservation of our traditional methods of agriculture and sowing of food grains endemic to the Eastern Himalayan region which will sustain the avian population and bird tourism. The survival of endemic birds largely depends on the sound and healthy ecology of the area.

“This book needs to be included in the school curriculum for children so that they can learn about the urgent need to appreciate and conserve our environment and ecology,” Pradhan said.

‘A Rustle in the Foliage’ also received praise from the academic world.

In her address during the event, Priyanka Chatterjee, Assistant Professor (English), University of North Bengal, said that ‘A Rustle in the Foliage’ shows a new way of writing with empathy about our surroundings and our complicated lives, it There is not just one story. Along with bird watching, also a story of this region – Eastern Himalayas.

“The narrative also challenges the metaphor of the ‘fastness’ of our lives in the current capitalist system, by slowing down the narrative and inspiring us to absorb the sounds of the forest and nature. The narrative style is clear and has an economy of words that never goes beyond limits. The book contains stunning photographs of birds and rhyming poems that are not only self-reflective, but also a pleasant digression from the prose, yet equally intense. The book is replete with local names of trees, birds and local myths and legends, reminiscent of the cultural storytelling that is fast disappearing from our disintegrated lives.

He added, “This book, which is a bird story at its core, is also a fascinating text for many different types of writing that defy classification. It has literary, social, cultural, and environmental connotations that make it an example of interdisciplinary writing. This is a book that talks about nurturing our passions with utmost care, nurturing the world around us, and developing ourselves into someone who understands the world with empathy so that we can use it for the future and ourselves. Can give to children.

Next, Lekha Rai, owner of Café The Twins and literary enthusiast, was in conversation with the author. During the interaction, several issues related to conservation and sustainability of bird-keeping, bird photography and bird tourism as well as village tourism were discussed in detail.

Former senior bureaucrat Pempa Tamang was also present at the book-release event.

Government of Sikkim, veteran journalist and accomplished litterateur Subhash Deepak, renowned historian and author Dr. Sonam Wangyal, and retired Salbari police officer turned birdwatcher and author Rajen Moktan.

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