BENGALURU: It’s the constant nagging from my wife that made me go ahead and write this book or I would have procrastinated for sure,” retired Forest Officer A C Lakshmana replied when asked about what triggered him to write his latest book, Challenges of A Tropical Forester for Sustainable Development.
A C Lakshmana, a former secretary to the government of Karnataka, described this book as a partial memoir with a message on the current issues that Karnataka forests are facing. “I come from a very small village near Srirangapatna. My grand uncle was a forest officer and that’s how I became inspired to become one. My love for forest runs in my blood. But today, it breaks my heart to see the decimation of forests. We need to understand that we are in a symbiotic relationship with forests and humans should not break the chain,” he said.
In the book, Lakshmana has emphasised that to mitigate climate change, we need to work towards increasing green cover and encourage use of eco-friendly wood like bamboo. The book also contains a few anecdotes from Lakshmana’s time of service. From being in close range with a tiger to learning humility from tribal woman, he has had a whirlwind of an experience.
The 81-year-old recalls that he was known as “a terror to wood smugglers”. During his service in Kodagu district, he received death threats, was offered bribes and pressurised with transfer orders. But Lakshmana took it as an adventure. Having authored five books, he said he is popular among his friends for his bratty sense of humour. “As a forester, I really loved Jim Corbett’s books. Please introduce me as Jim Corbett with lathi,” he said.
The retired forester is soon coming up with a second part of the book, which will speak about practical ways of sustainable conservation and development of forests.