Mangaluru, March 02, 2020: The second Parisara Sammelana, organised under the aegis of National Environment Care Federation (NECF), has urged the government to take initiative to protect the environment and safeguard the forests and wildlife as envisioned in the Article 48A of the Indian Constitution.
The convention was held at the Tree Park on Tannirbavi Beach on Sunday.
The participants said that increase in human activities and destruction of forest had affected the biodiversity hotspots of Western Ghats.
The Sammelana was held in the form of a people’s court which was presided by Human Rights activist Dr Ravindranath Shanbhag. The people’s court took up 36 cases pertaining to the environment. Environmentalists from coastal and Malnad regions, who have been fighting various environment-related cases in various courts, presented their cases on the occasion.
Activist and environmentalist Akilesh Chippali said amendments were needed in laws to check the destruction of forests.
‘’Over 30 lakh trees are felled for various projects in the Western Ghats. Madhav Gadgil report on conservation of the Western Ghats should be implemented to protect environment.’’
Activist Yogish from Chikkamagaluru said that King Cobras in the Western Ghats had been losing their source of food due to human activities. Destruction of habitats through hunting, trekking and other activities have resulted in the loss of food source to King Cobras.
Environmentalist Kalavathi P said 9,580 cases were booked for vehicular pollution between 2005 and 2016 and a fine to the tune of Rs 82 lakh were collected. However, the problem continues as these vehicles are allowed to ply after the payment of penalty.
‘’There is a need for stringent rules and such polluting vehicles should be seized and should not be allowed to ply on the road,’’ she added.
Stressing the need to conserve turtles, research student Mamatha K S said that turtles have not been coming to the shore to lay eggs due to the pollution in the sea between Mangaluru and Karwar. The spillage of oil has resulted in the pollution. “The government should chalk out a plan to check the pollution in sea.”
Padma Shri award winner Tulsi Gowda said that there was a need to plant fruit-bearing trees that were indigenous to the Western Ghats instead of acacia.
A panel of advocates present at the programme extended their support to those who are fighting for the cause of environment.
Padma Shri awardee and Halakki tribal folk singer Sukri Bommagowda and activist Diyego Bastyav Siddi also spoke.
NECF State Secretary Shashidhar Shetty and member Dinesh Holla said that their fight would continue till demands for the protection of environment and wildlife were fulfilled.
Members of Halakki and Siddi communities presented their traditional dance, while Chethana Kapappa’s team presented a play ‘Makkala Kade Koogu’ on the occasion.
Works of some of the artists, on canvas, were related to environment.
An art work mocking Yettinahole project attracted the onlookers.