Photo : Lakshitha Karunarathna
Sanctuary Asia began its journey one quiet evening in 1980. Sitting around Fateh Singh Rathore’s campfire under the banyan tree outside Jogi Mahal, Ranthambhore, Bittu Sahgal made an impulsive promise to his mentor that on his return to Mumbai he would start a wildlife magazine and galvanise urban Indians in support of the country’s wilds.
The first issue rolled out in October 1981, with no business plan, no editorial experience and no capital. Since then, Sanctuary has been chronicling India’s natural history and shaping conservation discourse without having missed a single issue despite wars, social strife and economic meltdowns. It is published monthly, with every alternate month’s publication dedicated to young readers.
In 2015, the foundation was established to manipulate the magazine’s wide network of conservationists, naturalists, photographers, writers and editors who run the several projects, campaigns and events that thrive under the Sanctuary brand. The foundation’s reach spans policy, advocacy, science, on-ground support for field workers and environmental education.
At the heart of our purpose lies the conviction that the economies of nations sit on a foundation of stable ecosystems. Sanctuary envisions a world with abundant biodiversity, a sustainable climate and an equitable future for one and all.
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We are signing off this year with an issue dedicated to HOPE.
Meet the real heroes of our planet -- the Sanctuary Wildlife Awards 2021 winners who have persevered through incredibly challenging situations to do what must be done to protect our most vulnerable wildlife and their habitats.
Encouraged by the support it received, three years after the first edition of Sanctuary Asia came out, a second magazine was launched in 1984. Sanctuary Cub is the first and still the only children’s nature magazine in India. With an aim to instill respect and concern for the environment and wildlife in young children, for many young Indians, Cub continues to be their first introduction to the wild and wonderful world of nature.
Currently edited by Tara Sahgal, Sanctuary Cub aims to inculcate in children an urgency to take action and the need to create a positive change in a society that gives little thought to its rapidly depleting biodiversity.
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"HOPE is the thing with feathers”, wrote the great poet Emily Dickinson. Now, 150 years later, the Great Indian Bustard (GIB) on this issue’s cover may just be her exquisite metaphor come alive!
We hope this issue inspires you to action. Meet GIB conservationist Radheshyam Bishnoi, forensic scientist C. Samyukta and the Sanctuary Wildlife Awards 2021 winners. Learn how supporting small-scale fisheries can save life on earth, gaze at a pretty pollen be-dusted bee, and so much more!