Basanti Devi – The Environmentalist Behind Saving The Kosi River


Basanti Devi is an Indian environmentalist who is attributed to be the mind and hand behind saving the Kosi River in Uttarakhand. Her life had been a tough testament to her struggles, she was married off to an older man when she was just 12, and within two years of her marriage, her husband died as she was sent off to live in an ashram for girls. At the mere age of 14, she started living at the Kausani ashram that was founded by Sarla Behn. She also started pursuing her studies and looking after children and women in the facility. Basanti Devi now 64 says that Kausani ashram changed her life for the better and inspired her to do social service and take up the issue of saving the Kosi River and working dedicatedly towards it. She received the Padma shri and the Nari Shakti award both of which were the highest honours. Devi Ji is now looked at as a champion crusader for both women’s empowerment and environmental protection.


She was initially tasked with opening Bal Baris that were active centres of recreation for children and young adults. She started opening them in remote villages that also took care of the children’s education and nutrition. Devi read an article on how the Kosi River (the most important water resource for Uttarakhand) may cease to exist in a few decades due to the rapid felling of trees by local women. These local women were from poor households who had no access to any other source of firewood so Devi ji encouraged them to not cut trees but use the dry ones for fuel and firewood. She organised them into small groups that were aimed to save the Kosi River, this helped both empower women as well as save the environment. She also protested and fought against the forest department for cutting big trees. Although the results have taken time to manifest, springs that used to dry up in the summer are now active all year. Additionally, the forest exhibits greater diversity thanks to the appearance of more broad-leaved trees including oak, rhododendron, and myrica esculenta species.


About Impaac?

Impaac Foundation is a non-profit, technology-driven crowdfunding, social networking platform which focuses on bridging the gap between the people who are looking for help & the people who are willing to help. We are building a social community that depicts the values of social responsibility & help anyone, anywhere, anytime. We provide viable solutions to NGOs for different causes to run their system smoothly & effectively with non-profit intentions.

Why Us?

•Truly NO Charges
•Trust Guaranteed
•24*7 Assistance
•1000% Transparent
•Technical Support
•Seamless Donations

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *