Institutional Distinctiveness 2020-21

Institutional Distinctiveness (Criterion 7) of the College for the Session 2020-21

The college promotes and practices eco-centric learning in all aspects. Students complete a course on Environmental Studies where they complete a project focusing on sustainable practices and lifestyle. Students are also made aware of the importance of ecology and the need to protect and preserve the same for future generations. Students also regularly visit the markets to supervise cleanliness of the area and to ensure proper disposal of daily biodegradable and non-biodegradable wastes separately. The department of Biological Sciences, especially the Department of Zoology, is a pioneer in this arena. The department has undertaken measures for saving the Gangetic Dolphins. The department has also conducted workshops with fishermen of the area to teach them the benefits of appropriate nets that catch big fishes but lets the small fishes escape, thereby helping them in growing and reaching reproductive age. Capturing small fishes jeopardizes the fish population by killing and preventing the production of fish spawns.

In the second campus of the college, a pond of 10,000 sq. ft. area is used to conserve indigenous fish populations of the area. It is an in-situ conservation project that began with eleven species of fish that has increased to include 37 species over the last six years. Named “Abhay-pukur” this natural eco-system is carefully maintained for the fish population to breed naturally as far as possible. The conservation project has also increased the species diversity of snails, fireflies, and aquatic fauna in the eco-system. Excess organisms from the ecosystem are collected and distributed among different students to maintain sub-populations in their locality. This is a very unique attempt to maintain sustainable development of the local aquatic ecosystem. The eco-system has developed into an excursion site and students from different institutions in the nearby areas visit this aquatic ecosystem to study the local fish diversity.

The department of Zoology also maintains a small butterfly garden that provides an excellent site for students to learn about butterflies. To maintain the butterfly species, approximately 32 different plant species are also regularly maintained and nurtured. At present 9 different species of butterfly are present in this garden. They complete their life cycles in this enclosed area. During severe winter and summer the population falls. But the department tries to maintain this population by providing supplementary food and artificial comfortable environment conditions for their survival. When the member of a particular species exceeds the carrying capacity of the small garden, the excess butterflies are released in the natural environment.

The department also observes different days dedicated to the environment like World Wildlife Day (March 03), Earth Day (April 22), World Environment Day (June 05), International Tiger Day (July 29) etc. to promote awareness among students and staff about environmental degradation and the methodologies to combat the same. Seminars and conferences are regularly conducted for furthering the awareness and practice of environmental conservation. Our College has a mutual understanding, though verbal, with the World Wildlife Fund. Eminent environmentalist Dr. Tanmoy Rudra, who is also the General Secretary of International Foundation for Environment and Ecology, periodically visits the college to interact with the students and encourage them towards preserving ecology and practice sustainability.