One day as I was passing through a forest with my friends, I saw a man cutting a tree. We went over to him and asked, “Why are you cutting the tree?” He looked at us strangely and said, “This is my jungle. I grew up in it and I use its resources for my livelihood.”

I realised that he is not aware of the importance of trees and arguing with him will lead us nowhere. Understanding the situation, I spoke in a friendly tone and told him that by cutting trees he is harming the insects, birds and animals. Cutting of trees or deforestation leads to global warming and can disturb the ecological balance of environment which would later invite common disasters such as floods and earthquakes. I noticed that he was listening to me carefully and had understood what I said.

“I was ignorant about all this,” he said. “Today, I promise that I’ll plant more trees. This is my jungle and I’ll protect it from deforestation.”

Some days later, I ran into the same man at the market. There he gifted me a globe with a tree on it. He told me that he is working at a shop as a helper. I was happy to see this change. We talked for few more minutes and then I bade him goodbye.

Utkarsha, Kendriya Vidyalaya OLF, Dehradun