Lawachhara and its beauty -Ridwan Rizvi
Sreemangal, an upazila in the district Moulavi Bazar, is known as the capital of tea because it contains more than 38 tea gardens of various sizes. Thousands of tourists visit these gardens every year, especially during the leaf-picking seasons. There is also another reason people visit Sreemangal and it is the Lawachara reserve forest.
The Lawachara forest is only 8 kilometers away from the town. There are CNGs and auto rickshaws to carry the tourists to the spot from the town. The roads are made of the tea gardens, woven with unexpected curves and turns, which gives a thrilling adventure for a journey.
The forest is apparently manmade with history signifying the plantation by the British government. The national park covers approximately 1,250 ha of land. The land was declared a national park by the Bangladesh government on 7 July 1996 under the Wildlife Act of 1974. There are railway lines that run through the forest.
The uniqueness of the forest is that it is the sole rain forest of the country. Although the peak season for the tourists is in the winter, during the rain, the forest looks more greenery and young. The tall deciduous trees create a natural umbrella. The deeper the forest, the lesser the sunlight and thicker silence.
The very trees have grown into this magnanimous forest which is home to a variety of wildlife. The forest accommodates more than 246 species of birds, 6 different species of snakes, wild dogs, chimps, owls, eagles, etc. Deeper into the forest resides the endangered species of hoolock gibbons. One can find deer, bears, jackals, leopards, and elephants too on good days.
There are about eighteen villages near Lawachara. Two of them (Magurchara punji and Lawachara punji) are located within the boundaries of the park. Indigenous peoples in the area include the Christian Khasia people, the Hindu Tripuri people, the Tipra people, and the Monipuri people. The rest of the population are mostly Muslim migrants from Noakhali, Comilla, and Assam.
Lawachara is one of the most visited spots in the Sylhet division. However, it is essential that we remember to not harm the animals or their natural habitats, litter the forest or ruin its sanctity in any way.
Info & Photo Source: Internet