40 Years Ago A 16-Year-Old Began Planting A Tree Every Day On A Remote Island, And Today It’s Unrecognizable

Majuli is the largest island covered by a river. The beautiful Majuli I being faced with threat due to the uncontrollable soil erosion that happens. The monsoonal rain which effects constantly to the settlements from north to the river, therefore they have built huge dams which gradually leads the river to flow ferociously to sink the island. History report of cases of 35 villagers that has been sunken by the river and the endangered Majuli Island was always in doubt of saving by the authorities. The island was saved by a single person’s initiation.


He is Jadav Payeng. He was only 16 years old when the threat to the island was in a severe run. His first impression that took the long way in making something happen to save Majuli is amazing. Jadav came across an incident where he saw many snakes which were washed to the sands of the island due to the floods had died due to excess heat by the soil. This incident made him realize growing plants will bring some control to the trouble. Since then he started to plant in the island every single day.

His attempt for many years finally made the place a forest of 550 hectares of plants. It records it is even larger than the 340 hectares, central park of New York City. The forest Majuli is now a habitat for many wildlife. Bengal tigers, Indian rhinos and hundreds of elephant stopover Majuli every year.

Image credit: William D McMaster

Watch the short documentary below to learn more about the “Forest Man of India”

Many people are already in awe of this hero:

Like what you're reading? Subscribe to our top stories.