What started as a desolate patch of land in 1991 has grown to be one of the most dazzling rainforest sanctuaries in the world.

Back when Pamela and Anil Malhotra purchased what is now the Sai Sanctuary of southern India, the 55 acres of land had been deforested for cardamom and coffee fields.

The couple started to rehabilitate the land by nursing the natural grasses and shrubbery back into healthy abundance. With the return of the greenery, native insects returned to the fields. Once the insects returned, the couple helped coax the rainforest’s native trees back to their former glory.

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With the return of the trees, elephants and monkeys moved back into the territory as well.

Now, the former patch of arid wasteland has blossomed into 300 acres of lush greenery.

Over the course of the 20-year healing process, the National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries has recognized the vital importance of the Sai Sanctuary and offered protections over the land. The rainforest is also now called one of the hottest “hot spots” of biodiversity in the world, according to the United Nations

(WATCH the Great Big Story video below) – Photo by Great Big Story

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