Another round of elections in states, another set of ministers and maybe another government- but will our environment and ecosystem ever see a restoration? The pace at which destruction and havoc is being wrought on our natural green cover is alarming. The rate at which the biodiversity around us is depleting is shocking. And, the pace at which our environment - viz. air, water, soil- is degrading should send chills down our spine! Yet, we are not realizing the exact situation. We are not understanding the cost at which we are getting a new flyover or the latest rail route; we don’t comprehend the consequences of the new factories in our area that are running without complying to the environmental norms; we don’t see how mining and dredging should be affecting our health. But all these activities have done just that- killed our source of clean air- killed the forests and green cover!
You may not realise it but the old banyan tree that was cut down to widen the road, or the ancient peepal tree that was pulled out and dumped, was in fact your area’s oxygen cylinder beside being a home to numerous birds, insects, butterflies etc. You have paid a heavy price. The air in your locality shall never be the same again. And, then, you think the dye unit or sawmill or ply factory is not doing any harm, just bringing some tears into your eyes from the fumes and ash it emits; you cannot be more wrong! It is poisoning your air! And, worse, it is bringing you and your loved ones on the threshold of slow, painful death! Your youth, vitality, positivity and health are being sucked! You don’t want to raise a voice? No one is listening to you? Why don’t you show your might at the voting booth? Tell those who come asking for your precious vote that you want to settle for nothing less than clean environment. Command them to bring an act to control rising human population so that the conflict between man and natural resources can be put to rest. Direct them to base all development projects on Brownfield technology and not Greenfield as the latter literally eats up natural resources and green cover. Order them to include these promises in their electoral mandate. Say you want a guarantee that the green cover in your region and forest cover of the state and country should not be compromised. No development should be made at the cost of Nature, and mean it! Let us see if there is any political party that has the guts to oblige you!