At the 5th Balipara Foundation Awards, 2017, we welcomed and honored global legends in Asian Elephant Conservation. These legends have done remarkable work in the field of preserving and conserving the most iconic species and in lending their voice to support community and Asian Elephant conservation efforts.
Khun Sivaporn Dardarananda Secretary General of Elephant Reintroduction Foundation is taking forward the vision of her Majesty Queen Sirikit. Under his leadership and team of researchers, scientist, rangers and veterinarians, they have successfully reintroduced captive elephants into the wild in Thailand. The Elephant Reintroduction Foundation was founded in 1996 by HM Queen Sirikit to reintroduce domesticated elephants into the wild, restore wild habitats with indigenous plants and wildlife, research and propagate knowledge about elephants and promote appropriate management of elephants in Thailand for their long-term survival. The total elephants reintroduced by the foundation is 84 until 2012. The elephants are acquired either through donation or purchase of captive elephants and reintroduced to protected forest habitat to live as wild elephants.
Eastern Himalayan Elephant Princess, Priyanka Yoshikawa is the winner of the coveted Miss World Japan, 2016 title. A half Indian and a half Japanese, Priyanka represents the bio cultural heritage of both Japan and India. She is the brand ambassador of Balipara Foundation’s Elephant Country. She has a Laos National Certification, Cambodia for Elephant Training and is evangelizing connecting with Nature and Elephant through her visit to Assam hopes to create a partnership between India and Japan- where the Sun meets the Sun and we inculcate an appreciation for Nature and our Natural Heritage in the people of her generation. Who need to move away from the digital world and come and spend quality time in the forests and in the Animal Kingdom.
Parbati Baruah affectionately known as The Queen of Elephants, is the daughter of the legendary Prakhitish Chandra Baruah (Lalji) known for his knowledge and passion for elephants. She was initiated in to the field of elephant management by her father and has earned recognition by Governments across the country for her knowledge of elephant conflict management and her skills at handling both captive and wild elephants. The Assam Government appointed her the 'Honorary Chief Elephant Warden of Assam 'and the West Bengal Government appointed her the Course Director. She is also a member of the Asian Elephants Special Group of IUCN and a Member of the 'Man-Elephant Conflict Task Force' of the Government of Assam.