Sinha seeks people’s participation to make JK polythene-free
Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha on Saturday sought people’s participation to make the union territory polythene-free, and said it was up to the people to save the planet in the face of the biggest climate crisis.
Sinha made the remarks at a musical event, ‘Battle of Bands for Polythene Free Srinagar’, organised by the Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) at Sher-e-Kashmir Park here.
“The SMC has started a good campaign and several people from the civil society have joined it…. Its success depends upon the participation of the common people. So, I appeal to all citizens of J&K UT, especially young brothers and sisters, that it is our duty to make this campaign successful. When all of you support this, only then the polythene-free J-K campaign will become successful, the lieutenant governor said.
He said the world is in the midst of the biggest climate crisis and it is up to the people how to save the planet and the cities.
“If we lose the balance between (protecting) nature and development, I am certain that global warming will destroy our civilisations and all the modern facilities we have created for mankind,” he said.
Sinha said he strongly believes it is a collective responsibility to include rivers, forests, grasslands, wetlands and all other living species in development plans because they are integral to the existence of humans.
“That is why we are making attempts to keep bio-diversity in mind in making Jammu as well as Srinagar smart cities, he said.
He said that as part of the smart city project, the UT administration has submitted a proposal for Metro Rail in the twin capital cities of Srinagar and Jammu.
“Jammu & Kashmir has demonstrated an impressive capacity to maintain and increase forest cover. We have to exploit every possible tool available to ensure our cities complement this effort by saying no to polythene and strengthening our natural ecosystem,” he said.
“We are in the middle of the biggest climate crisis and it is up to us how we shape our planet and the cities today,” the Lt Governor said.
“It is our collective responsibility to include rivers, forests, grasslands, wetlands and all other living species in our future development plans. It is our greatest duty to maintain delicate balance of the environment,” added the Lt Governor.
The present generation needs to remember that ‘Nature Never Forgives’. If we lose the balance between Nature and development, I am certain global warming will destroy our civilization and all the modern facilities we have created for mankind, the Lt Governor added.
Our small steps can prevent irreversible damage from climate change. Everyone must strongly support this unique movement and say ‘No to Polythene’, said the Lt Governor.
Speaking on the emerging threat of plastic waste, the Lt Governor observed that around 300 million tons of plastic waste is being collected all over the world every year. As per 2019 report of the Central Pollution Control Board, 34,367 tonnes of plastic waste is being collected every year in Jammu Kashmir and a sizeable portion is single-use polythene, he added.
Climate change is real. If we do not take action now to protect Mother Nature, our rivers, lakes and localities in future could possibly be buried under the burden of this waste, said the Lt Governor.
“We cannot overcome environmental challenges without people’s participation. I urge everyone to do their bit to support this important cause,” observed the Lt Governor.
Citing an example of a small town of Palwal in Haryana, the Lt Governor also advised people to adopt eco-friendly practices like using cotton bags to curb polythene pollution.
“We must add ‘Rethink Strategy’ in our existing 6R Campaign- Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Remove, Refuse, and Report to strengthen our resolve for bringing better environmental sustainability in the UT,” he added.
“The action plan prepared by Srinagar Municipal Corporation for Waste to Energy Plant has been approved. We are planning to start door-to-door collection of 100% solid waste in all the cities of UT by 2nd October,” he added.
Terming the revival of Khushal Sar Lake as one of the biggest examples of Jan-Bhageedari in environment protection endeavors, the Lt Governor expressed gratitude to everyone involved in lake rejuvenation initiative.
“Manzoor Ahmad has done phenomenal work and he is an inspiration for our citizens. I have learnt that he is also working on other plans as well with active participation of the government departments. The administration has also taken up the work of Jhelum Riverfront,” added the Lt Governor.
On the occasion, pledge was also administered to make Srinagar a polythene-free zone.