Yadav Payeng-Brief Life Sketch


Discover the inspiring journey of Jadav Payeng (Yadav Payeng), the Forest Man of Assam, who transformed a barren land into a thriving forest ecosystem. Learn about his early life, dedication to afforestation, recognition, and lasting impact on environmental conservation.


Yadav Payeng-Brief Life Sketch

Yadav Payeng

Yadav Payeng-Brief Life Sketch

Yadav Payeng is a Nature conservationist and environmentalist of Assam, India.

He was born on 30 October 1959 in Barghop village of Kokilamukh in the present-day Jorhat district. His father’s name was Lakshiram Payeng and his mother’s name was Afuli Payeng. Yadav Payeng completed his education at Bali Gaon Primary School No. 90. From Yadunath Bezbaruah, one of his teachers, Payeng learned the lessons of conservation of the environment and love for animals.  From his childhood, he became accustomed to planting trees every year. Yadav Payeng, who started planting trees in 1979, had made a huge woods (forest) called ‘Molai Kathani’. This Molai Kathani is presently located in the teeth of Aruna Chapari of the newly formed Majuli district.

The Molai Kathani, at present, covers 1360 acres or 4050 bighas of land. In addition to the valuable range of red sandalwood, white sandalwood, sichu, halakh, gamari, titachapa, pama etc., the wood is covered with a wide range of medicinal plants. The main attraction of the forest is some leopard, 115 elephants and more than 500 deer. There are Asian rhinoceros in the woods.  

In 2012, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi conferred on him the title of ‘Forest Man of India’ in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the protection of the environment. In that year, the then President of India, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam, presented a ‘Diamond Award’ worth Rs. 250 lakhs. He was felicitated at the Global Conference in 2012 held in Paris. In 2015, the Government of India conferred the title of ‘Padma Shri’ on him. Yadav Payeng has so far been invited and honoured in China, Taiwan, Sri Lanka, Doha, Switzerland, France and Bangladesh. 0 0 0

Jadav Payeng (Yadav Payeng) Exhaustive Biogrpahy

Jadav Payeng (Yadav Payeng): Exhaustive Biogrpahy

Early Life

Jadav “Molai” Payeng was born on October 31, 1963, in the indigenous Mising tribe in the state of Assam, India. He grew up in a modest environment, surrounded by the rich natural beauty of the region. The simplicity of his early life, intertwined with nature, significantly influenced his perspective and future endeavors.

Turning Point: The Flood of 1979

1979, a devastating flood swept through the region, washing away much of the soil and vegetation on Majuli Island, where Jadav lived. The aftermath was grim: dead snakes and animals lay scattered, unable to survive the harsh conditions. This sight deeply disturbed the young Jadav, who was then 16 years old. He sought guidance from the village elders and local forest department but received a disheartening response that nothing could be done.

Beginning of Afforestation

Undeterred, Jadav decided to take matters into his own hands. He began by planting bamboo saplings on a barren sandbar near his home. His initial efforts were driven by a simple yet profound realization that planting trees could restore the lost greenery and create a suitable habitat for wildlife. For over 30 years, Jadav tirelessly planted trees, transforming the once barren land into a lush forest.

The Birth of Molai Forest

Today, the forest, known as Molai Forest, spans approximately 1,360 acres and is a thriving ecosystem home to a wide variety of flora and fauna. The forest boasts hundreds of thousands of trees, including bamboo, cotton trees, and various other species. It has become a sanctuary for wildlife such as elephants, Bengal tigers, rhinoceroses, deer, rabbits, and a plethora of bird species.

Recognition and Awards

Jadav Payeng’s remarkable dedication and efforts began to gain recognition in the 2000s. His story was brought to the limelight by Jitu Kalita, a local journalist and wildlife enthusiast, who documented Jadav’s work and shared it with the world. Since then, Jadav has received numerous accolades and awards for his environmental conservation efforts:

2012: Honored as the “Forest Man of India” by the government of India.

2013: The Jawaharlal Nehru University honored him with the title of “Forest Man of India.”

2015: Felicitated by the Indian Institute of Forest Management, Bhopal, for his outstanding contribution to forest conservation.

2015: Honored with the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award in India.

2019: Featured in the documentary “Forest Man,” which won accolades at the Cannes Film Festival.


Jadav Payeng’s work has had a profound impact on environmental conservation and sustainability. His efforts have not only restored a vital ecosystem but have also inspired countless individuals and organizations worldwide to take action for the environment. He has become a symbol of what one person can achieve with dedication, perseverance, and a deep love for nature.

Personal Life

Jadav Payeng lives a simple life in a small house near the forest he created. He continues to work tirelessly for the environment, engaging in various conservation projects and raising awareness about the importance of afforestation. His story has been included in educational curriculums and serves as an inspiration to students and environmentalists globally.

Future Plans

Jadav Payeng remains committed to expanding his afforestation efforts. He advocates for sustainable development and encourages younger generations to understand and respect nature. He plans to continue his work on Majuli Island and beyond, hoping to inspire a global movement for environmental conservation.


Jadav Payeng’s journey from a distressed teenager witnessing environmental degradation to a celebrated environmentalist known as the “Forest Man of India” is a testament to the power of individual action. His life’s work serves as a powerful reminder that one person’s efforts can indeed make a significant difference in the world. 0 0 0.

Yadav Payeng (Jadav Payeng)-FAQs

Yadav Payeng (Jadav Payeng)-FAQs

Some FAQs on Jadav Payeng

1. Who is Jadav Payeng?

Jadav Payeng, also known as the Forest Man of India, is an environmentalist from Assam who single-handedly transformed a barren sandbar into a thriving forest ecosystem over several decades.

2. When and where was Jadav Payeng born?

Jadav Payeng was born on October 31, 1963, in the indigenous Mising tribe in Assam, India.

3. What inspired Jadav Payeng to start planting trees?

In 1979, a devastating flood in Assam washed away soil and vegetation, leaving behind a barren landscape. The sight of dead animals and the harsh environment inspired Jadav Payeng to begin planting trees to restore the greenery.

4. What is the Molai Forest?

Molai Forest is the forest created by Jadav Payeng on Majuli Island in Assam. It spans approximately 1,360 acres and is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna.### 5. What types of trees and plants are found in Molai Forest?
The Molai Forest includes bamboo, cotton trees, and various other species of trees and plants, creating a rich and diverse ecosystem.

6. What wildlife inhabits the Molai Forest?

The forest is a sanctuary for wildlife, including elephants, Bengal tigers, rhinoceroses, deer, rabbits, and numerous bird species.

7. What awards and recognition has Jadav Payeng received?

Jadav Payeng has received numerous accolades, including the Padma Shri in 2015, and has been honored by various institutions for his outstanding contribution to forest conservation.

8. How did Jadav Payeng’s work gain recognition?

Jadav Payeng’s work gained recognition in the 2000s when local journalist Jitu Kalita documented and shared his story, bringing it to national and international attention.

9. What is the significance of the documentary “Forest Man”?

The documentary “Forest Man,” which features Jadav Payeng’s work, has won accolades at the Cannes Film Festival and helped raise global awareness about his environmental efforts.

10. What is Jadav Payeng’s impact on environmental conservation?

Jadav Payeng’s efforts have restored a vital ecosystem and inspired countless individuals and organizations worldwide to engage in environmental conservation and afforestation.

11. What are Jadav Payeng’s future plans?

Jadav Payeng plans to continue his afforestation efforts on Majuli Island and beyond, advocating for sustainable development and inspiring younger generations to respect and protect nature.

12. How can Jadav Payeng’s work inspire others?

Jadav Payeng’s story demonstrates the profound impact one individual can have on the environment through dedication and perseverance, encouraging others to take similar actions for conservation. 0 0 0.


Yadav Payeng Images

Yadav Payeng Images Yadav Payeng Yadav Payeng Yadav Payeng


Yadav Payeng Yadav Payeng Yadav Payeng Yadav Payeng

N.B.  The article ‘Yadav Payeng-Brief Life Sketch’ originally belongs to the book ‘Introduction to World Personalities‘ by Menonim Menonimus.

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I am Menonim Menonimus, a Philosopher & Writer.


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