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Bamboo, until recently was classified as a ‘tree’ instead of a grass in India. Bamboos and trees have fundamentally different rooting systems. Bamboos have rhizomes which regenerate and spread underground. If a rhizome is cut it does not die, as would a root, but become several plants instead of one.

I was first exposed to the issues surrounding Bamboo through my residency seminars with Centre for Civil Society, a public policy think tank based out of New Delhi, India. They host a repository of research on the impact of the incorrect classification of Bamboo and the potential of the Bamboo industry.
The varied uses of bamboo is endless. From edible bamboo shoots, to automobile, construction, bio fuel, bamboo fabric, etc. Although the legislation has changed, it’s actual implementation on ground is far from reality. This series looks to captures the essence of the story of bamboo in India, from 'tree' to 'grass'.
The incorrect classification of Bamboo has severely impacted the livelihood of tribal communities and forest dwelling communities. It has further contributed to the lack of development of Bamboo in the country. It has been estimated by the Planning Commission that Bamboo and related industries have the potential of generating employment for close to fifty million people in the country.