Udupi, Mar 14, 2016 : An awareness convention - ‘Vruksha Raksha – Vishwa Raksha’, afforestation project was held at Rajangana here on March 13, Sunday. The project, a flagship scheme of the fifth paryaya of Vishwesha Tirtha Swami of Pejawar Mutt, aims at planting of about two crore saplings to protect environment, prevent pollution and promote greenery in Udupi district in the next two years.
The intention behind the convention was to create awareness about the project and also to collect opinions from youth organisations, voluntary groups, gram panchayat members and environmentalists on effective implementation of the project. It will be launched in June to coincide with the onset of monsoon.
Inaugurating the convention, Vishwesha Tirtha Swami of Paryaya Pejawar Mutt, said that deforestation was posing a big problem to the environment in the country. People should realise the importance of planting saplings.
This project could be successful only if society and the government cooperate, he said. Vishwaprasanna Tirtha, junior seer of Pejawar Mutt, said that it was now usual for people to complain about the hot weather. To escape this heat, they were using airconditioners which were adding to global warming. The pace of life of people had increased in the last two decades, people were now buying two-wheelers and four-wheelers creating air pollution.
It would be better if people started planting saplings in their gardens. A house with a few trees around was likely to be cooler. “People should realise that felling trees is easy, but nurturing trees takes decades,” he said.
Pramod Madhwaraj, MLA, said that the Department of Forests would cooperate with the Pejawar Mutt in the implementation of the ‘Vruksha Raksha – Vishwa Raksha’ project. It was not the quantity but the quality of people who attend the convention which was important, he said.
Environmentalists Salumarada Thimmakka from Ramangara and Ashok from Channarayapatna were felicitated. Panduranga Hegde of Appiko movement from Sirsi, Satyanarayana Bhat, columnist, and Raghupati Bhat, former MLA, were present.