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Remote Nagaland village gets electricity after 24 years, holds special thanksgiving service

Snippets from the vibrant Northeast that capture politics, culture, society and more in the eight states.

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New Delhi: Earlier this week, Shinnyu village, in the Mon district of Nagaland, saw the arrival of electricity for the first time in 24 years. Located along the Indo-Myanmar border, Shinnyu is one of the remotest parts of Nagaland.

Established in 1997, it has now become the first solar-powered village in the state. Around 60 households of the village, a church, a school, a guest house and a community hall have been electrified using solar microgrids set up by the Mon district administration in collaboration with the Global Himalayan Expedition (GHE) — an international organisation dedicated to the promotion of solar energy.

“It is six hours away from the nearest town, Tobu. It is 12 hours away from the district headquarters. As you can imagine, it is a very remote village. We are thankful to the GHE for stepping in and taking the initiative which, by the way, was their first in the state,” Mon Deputy Commissioner Thavaseelan K. told the Inside Northeast.

To celebrate this momentous occasion, the church in Shinnyu village had also organised a special thanksgiving service on 16 February.

Assam filmmaker’s movie on farmers wins 3 international awards

An Assamese film on a farmer’s life by Bishal Swargiary of Baksa district, which was shot using the Redmi Note7 Pro mobile, has won awards in three different international film festivals.

Titled Working Man, the film won the ‘Short Best Mobile Film Award’ at the Europe Film Festival UK, the ‘Best Director for Mobile Short Film Award’ at the Port Blair International Film Festival and also emerged as the winner at the Kolkata International Micro Film Festival.

“This film is the story of a farmer’s life. The farmer goes to work on the farm after waking up early in the morning. The money he gets from the work is the money that bears the expenses of his family,” Swargiary has been quoted as saying.

The film has also been selected for the Khamrubu International Short Film Festival, Guwahati, in the ‘first-time filmmaker’ section.

Meghalaya man’s journey from a McDonald’s worker to coral reef preservation.

Meghalaya’s Sameer Chettri has had an extraordinary career graph — in 2008, he was working in a Mcdonald’s outlet but now he is a certified international diver and tirelessly trying to restore coral reefs in the Maldives.

Chettri, who is originally from Shillong, is currently based out of Males in the Maldives and has been contributing towards marine ecosystem conservation and coral reef restoration.

He had completed his aircraft maintenance engineering in 2008 from Hindustan Aerospace and Engineering in Pune and later joined Skyriders, India’s first and only skydiving company. But Chettri was soon unemployed during the 2008-09 recession and began working at McDonald’s.

He later joined Pondicherry-based Temple adventures, and it was here he ventured into diving. Chettri moved to the Maldives soon after with another employment and got his international license as a certified dive industry technician.

He is also involved in artificial reef building, installing fish aggregation devices, coral fragment restoration, assisting marine biologists and providing technical support in their respective projects.

This 70-year-old ‘Nelson Mandela fan’ in Assam has planted around 70,000 trees 

Biren Das, 70, has planted around 70,000 trees in his village in Assam’s Nalbari district. He spends most of the money that he earns from his small shop in planting more and more trees.

A huge fan of South African leader Nelson Mandela, Das is also fondly called ‘Mandela aati’ by neighbours and loved ones.

“From a very young age, I have planted trees as I believe that trees are a special part of our existence on Earth. Oxygen — the most precious thing — is something that is manufactured by trees,” he has been quoted as saying.

“Therefore, it is imperative that we plant as many trees as possible,” he added.

Das has also said that people should make valuable contributions to nature by planting trees on their birthdays. Actor Adil Hussain recently took to Twitter to share Das’ unique story.

Also read: This Manipur official has compiled folktales from 3 local tribes — in a comic book


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