Activist decries violation of Rio Declaration and Cartagena Protocol
Puja Bhattacharjee | March 9, 2016 | New Delhi
Noted environmental activist Bharati Chaturvedi has said that she considers the construction activities in preparation for the world culture festival in the Yamuna river plains, an act of violence against the river. "River beds, forests etc. are not private property. They are governed by the law of commons under the Rio declaration. The government violated the fundamental duty to protect the commons by leasing it for a private event,” she says. The Art of Living (AoL) foundation is holding its three-day World Culture Festival from March 11 to 13 on the flood plains of the Yamuna.
“Even if the government was naïve enough to grant permission, the AoL foundation with its enormous green credentials should have shown some moral fibre,” she adds.
“How can such an evolved bunch of people (AoL) not show any moral responsibility?” she says.
Bharti rues that most people do not understand the concept of ecology. “For most of us, ecology is a dense forest. There are various kinds of ecology- riverine, wetlands, floodplains etc.,” she says.
She points out that the Okhla bird sanctuary is very close by and some bird species like yellow bellied prinia, striated babbler, and brown crake are unique to Yamuna flood plains ecology. She says that this is the season of reverse migration of birds and the flood plains where the construction activity for the world culture festival is ongoing lies in the migration path of the birds. “The construction activity has destroyed the habitat and food chain of birds,” she says.
When the flood water in Yamuna receeds, it deposits rich alluvial soil on its banks which aids in farming. Once the plains are levelled, the earth loses all its porous quality which absorbs excess water. Activists allege that trees have also been uprooted, which Chaturvedi says has destroyed the carbon sink.
“We live in an era of climate change where freak events like cloud burst or heavy downpour lead to massive disasters. East Delhi is densely populated and more prone to such disasters. Moreover majority of marginalised and economically weaker sections reside in this part,” she says. “Chennai was proof that if you mess with the environment, you will be punished,” she adds.
On March 3, Sri Sri Ravishankar had tweeted, "Villagers have said that buffaloes who never ventured near the water are now entering the water. Even the buffaloes recognize!"
Villagers have said that buffaloes who never ventured near the water are now entering the water. Even the buffaloes recognize! (5)— Sri Sri Ravi Shankar (@SriSri) March 3, 2016
“Buffalo drinking water is not a sign of purity of the river. Every year many buffalos die after drinking polluted waters,” she says.
Sri Sri had also tweeted about enzymes prepared by volunteers to clean the polluted river.
"Thanks to the efforts of over 100,000 Delhi households who for three months prepared enzymes to clean nallahs, methane emission has reduced."
Thanks to the efforts of over 100,000 Delhi households who for 3 months prepared enzymes to clean nallahs, methane emission has reduced.(4)— Sri Sri Ravi Shankar (@SriSri) March 3, 2016
“Nobody has the right to put enzymes into the river. Cartagena agreement clearly says that alien species if introduced takes over and destroys the indigenous species. Moreover some ecology produces methane by natural processes,” she says.
History was created as prime minister Narendra Modi participated in the foundation-stone-laying ceremony for the new Ram Temple in Ayodhya on Wednesday, ending centuries of controversy. Modi performed Bhoomi Pujan at `Shree Ram Janmabhoomi Mandir`, in the presence of a very limited number o
The most joyous moment of a woman’s life is to breastfeed her baby for the first time. Breast milk is the foundation to build a strong bonding between mother and child and must not be missed by any newborn in its nutrition uptake. The World Health Organization (WHO) is encouraging people to “su
As part of its 3T strategy of focusing on testing, tracing and treating to contain the Covid-19 pandemic, India crossed a landmark, testing 2,02,02,858 COVID-19 samples so far. This is pursuant to the key strategy followed by state/UT governments under the guidance of the centre for managem
The continuing spread of COVID-19 has emerged as the biggest roadblock to development in 2020. Citizens across the globe have been breathing an air of panic, fear, and confusion, not knowing what lies ahead. The pandemic has hit some communities and countries harder than the others, requiring everyone to u
Senior BJP leader Kirit Somaiya has blasted BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) commissioner IS Chahal for taking credit for reducing the number of coronavirus infections in the in the slum sprawl of Dharavi, and wondered how could the authorities make boasts when 10,000-plus people have died.&n
Firebrand BJP leader Kirit Somaiya has blasted BMC Commissioner, IS Chahal, for claiming credit for reducing numbers of coronavirus cases in Mumbai city and said that BMC’s own Sero Survey has revealed that 57% slum dwellers have developed immunity which is why the cases are coming down.