The hill-state of Sikkim has constituted wetland committees at the local level to provide a multi-stakeholder platform for management of their diverse wetland regime. These committees have representation from government departments, NGOs, panchayats, religious groups, and community leaders. Effective functioning of these committees, named as Pukhri Sanrakshan Samity, is integral to wetlands conservation initiatives of the state.
Wetlands International South Asia, at the request of Forests and Environment Department, Government of Sikkim conducted a two-day training workshop on wetlands management for the wetland committee of Khecheopalri, a sacred wetland in the West Sikkim district. The two-day workshop, held at Pelling on 11-12 March, 2021 and attended by nearly 40 representatives from the government departments, panchayats, Samity members, NGOs and the monastery resulted in a draft management framework for the wetland.
In the field visit to the wetland and its catchments with the members, aspects of wetlands mapping, conservation of wetland hydrology, and regulation of touristic pressure were discussed. Wetlands International South Asia will continue to provide handholding support to the Government of Sikkim in its wetlands conservation efforts.