Guwahati, April 2: The Indegenous, a Paris-based international youth-led organization dedicated to putting the Stockholm Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples' serious statements into practice, has ramped up its sustained campaign for the protection of indigenous languages and with them the knowledge that comes from throughout the generations.
In the preparatory meeting held in New York at the UN headquarters on March 28 last in the run up to the 50th year commemoration of the Stockholm Declaration, which schedule for June 2nd and 3rd this year, Ms. Bhavna Choudhury, a Guwahati native and the founder of The Indegenous, flagged the contribution of indigenous communities for protecting the planet’s biodiversity, according to a communique issued by The Indegenous.
In the lead-up to the Stockholm+50 dialogues in June, The Indegenous is holding public consultations with all indigenous peoples in North East India to convey the voices, hopes and aspirations of indigenous youth for their future.
Throughout April, The Indegenous welcomes any and all opinions through audio-visual, multimedia, written or spoken form in all languages. Media Contact Lydia Vito Editor and PR, The Indegenous Email: [email protected]
The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) along with all other stakeholders held their preparatory meeting. The meeting was convened by the President of the General Assembly, Mr. Abdulla Shahid of Maldives, and chaired by the Stockholm+50 co-hosts, Sweden and Kenya.
The Indegenous represents indigenous communities at the UN General Assembly's Stockholm+50 preparatory meeting in New York.
Bhavna said, "I come from Assam, which is the gateway to one of the last remaining five primary forest regions on the planet. Indigenous peoples manage 80% of the world's biodiversity, and yet we were not included in the original Stockholm Declaration of 1972. I urge this body to work directly with Indigenous peoples and to make good on the financial commitments and policy instruments promised to us. I urge national governments to consider the protection of Indigenous languages, over 3000 of which are today at the risk of extinction, and with them the knowledge that comes from throughout the generations."
"Ladies and gentlemen, the unsustainable models of economic development cannot be pushed into Indigenous territories and developing countries anymore. Finally, we would like to recommend that this body reconsider the grouping of Indigenous peoples with local communities under the categorization of IPLC. Whereas Indigenous peoples are major stakeholders at the United Nations General Assembly when it comes to policy being turned into action, this is where we need to be cognizant of this grouping so that Indigenous peoples are not left behind, "said Bhavna.
The original Stockholm Declaration of 1972 set the precedent for all environmental policy. However, indigenous peoples were not considered a stakeholder in the original declaration. This year 50th year commemoration of the Stockholm Declaration, which will be held bringing together stakeholders - governments, international organizations, civil society and companies to work towards a “healthy planet for all’.
The preparatory meeting was held for a collaborative and multi-stakeholder discussion around the leadership dialogues, reflecting on the critical importance of taking action in order to attain a healthy world and prosperity for everybody.
In the framework of the decade of action and delivery for sustainable development, achieving a sustainable and inclusive recovery from the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) and accelerating the implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development are key goals.
These discussions are planned to contribute to the international gathering by providing clear and specific proposals for action at all levels, particularly through collaborative programs.
The Indegenous has collaborators from three continents: Asia, Africa and Europe. Indigenous cultural variety is the cornerstone of the organization, and it hopes to share cultural legacy of the three continents with the world through the digital world by providing space on the internet to young indigenous people and organizations.
The Indegenous' core mission is to reduce inequities for indigenous people by enabling youth to fully participate in the formal economy, obtain access to justice, and participate in political processes and decision-making.