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Pledge to protect environment

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GREEN LUNG: District Collector M. Beena planting a sapling in the Mangalavanam bird sanctuary in the city on World Environment Day on Friday.
GREEN LUNG: District Collector M. Beena planting a sapling in the Mangalavanam bird sanctuary in the city on World Environment Day on Friday.

Staff Reporter

Seminars, tree-planting mark World Environment Day in city

Kochi: A slew of functions and tree-planting drives organised by various organisations marked the observance of the World Environment Day in the city.

At a function organised by the District Legal Services Authority on Friday morning, Justice Kurian Joseph of the Kerala High Court, said that the conservation of environment was the people’s responsibility. “Everyone is duty-bound to protect nature and pass it on to future generations without exhausting its resources,” he said addressing scores of students gathered to observe the day. “It is not the absence of law that gives rise to problems (vis-À-vis conservation of environment). Lack of civic sense coupled with abject disregard for laws and attempts at bypassing them are causing problems,” he said.

District Judge D. Pappachan presided over the function. A lecture on protection of environment was delivered by N. Chandramohanakumar, Registrar of Cochin University of Science and Technology (Cusat). Later, everyone present at the function took an oath to protect trees, water resources and the environment.

At the Environment Day celebration organised jointly by the Mangalavanam Extension Council, the Town Planning Committee of the Corporation of Kochi, the State chapter of the Indian Society of Authors and the Agriculture and Organic Farming Group India, District Collector M. Beena said that the problems posed by modern way of living almost invariably sought out the same set of solutions. “In olden days, we would only worry about bio-waste, but the ubiquity of plastic has become a bane lately. Earlier, each household was a self-sustained miniature ecosystem, but that has been obliterated by concrete jungles,” she said, emphasising dire need for eco-friendly development.

K. Sukumaran, former Judge of the High Court, presided over the function. A sapling planting drive was also organised as part of the programme.

Kerala State Legal Services Authority (KSLSA), Kerala High Court Advocates’ Association (KHCAA) and Lawyers’ Environmental Awareness Forum (LEAF) held a meeting at the court complex which was inaugurated by Justice S.R. Bannurmath, Chief Justice of the Kerala High Court. “Environmental degradation and its adverse after-effects are global, but each individual effort, however small, can make a difference,” he said in his inaugural address. M.P. Ashok Kumar, president of KHCAA, presided over the function and Justice Kurian Joseph, who is also the executive chairman of KELSA, delivered the keynote address. Earlier, Justice Bannurmath and Justice Kurian Joseph planted ‘Kanikonna’ (Cassia fistula) saplings on the court premises. Water conservation and save tree campaigns were organised at the Naval Base as part of the World Environment Day celebrations.

Cusat observed the day with planting saplings. “Growing trees is the only way to ward off the impending dangers posed by climate change,” said Cusat Pro-Vice Chancellor L. Godfrey.

Harithabhiyanam, a project for turning the environment green, was jointly launched by Rajagiri Outreach; Tata Indicom (Kerala Circle); Rotary Club, Kalamassery; and NSS unit of Rajagiri College.

A group of 100 members comprising students, social workers and environmentalists planted 400 saplings at the community centre of the Rotary Club. Kerala Latin Catholic Association under Archdiocese of Verapoly organised a photo exhibition at Ernakulam Press Club to commemorate the day. C.N. Karunakaran, Chairman of State Lalithakala Academy, inaugurated the exhibition.

The Institution of Engineers (India) local centre organised a lecture on climate change by Cusat Professor P. V. Joseph.

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