Satara, October 2015 : On the 16th of October, 2015 TERRE Policy Centre along with the Forest Department Satara division organised a Community dialogue at Kaas Village. TERRE has been organsing these dialogues since the year 2012 when the Kas plateau was inscribed as a World Natural Heritage Site. Exemplary progress has been made since then, thanks to the efforts of TERRE and the Forest Department. However problems of insensitive and indiscriminate tourism still remain.
Every year the objective of the dialogues is to review the progress of the last yers dialogue and make certain additions. This year the dialogue focused on the immediate need to set-up an information Centre for tourists, a Medical Centre for the local inhabitants and to create more employment opportunities. Present on the occasion were Mr. Anjankar CCF Forest Department Satara, Mr. Rajendra Shende Chairman TERRE, Dr. Vinita Apte President TERRE, Mr. Pandurang Taware Agri-tourism expert and representatives of MTDC.
Issues pertaining to locals, transport, education, infrastructure all were discussed during the day. Expert opinion was greatly valued by the locals. The main objective of this meeting was to inspire and motivate the people of Kaas to take efforts in protecting the biodiversity of the plateau. Concepts of sustainable living and eco-tourism were also discussed.