Lake is temple of Environment: Abhilash Khandekar

Sirpur Lake of Indore is a Ramsar site. After a prolonged campaign and ground level conservation initiative by Nature Volunteers, an NGO founded by two distinguished personalities Padmashri Bhalu Mondhe and Abhilash Khandekar, who is an acclaimed journalist and President Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association, Sirpur has been designated as a wetland site of international importance. Due to the untiring work by Nature Volunteers, there was a complete ban on activities that would pollute the Sipur lake. Obviously, there was a big no to the immersion of sacred idols and people were not supposed to discharge any material even if it was associated with religious activities in this water body.

The other day, in the presence of police, devotees in large numbers landed up at the lake and when they had left, the lake had been reduced to a heavily polluted water body. We are reproducing below Abhilash Khandekar‘s reaction that he has posted on facebook.

Environment conservation, wetlands
protection, saving the urban biodiversity are
now global issues being addressed by
almost all countries, including India, on
priority. The PM launched LiFE Mission a few
weeks ago.

United Nations bodies such as UNEP or UNDP or even Ramsar Convention are all aimed at securing biodiversity at any cost.

Yet, if this kind of religious congregations happen and they damage the ecology of lakes in an educated and a modern city like Indore, it is saddening. Also, what is disturbing is the fact this is happening in the Cleanest City of the country which is also expected to keep the water bodies clean. For me it was quite shocking to see the images of the Saturday incident at Sirpur.

I deplore it in strongest words because I consider a ‘Lake as a Temple of Environment’. No one has right to damage the ecology there and disturb bird habitat. Such human interventions must be stopped in time. – Abhilash Khandekar

Why should no fine be slapped on those who took out a long procession and came to Sirpur Lake which is a precious Ramsar Site, declared at the behest of the Geneva-based organisation?

It should be a place of pride for all Indoreans. TNV has been engaged in saving the lake and it’s natural bird habitat for over 30 years and suddenly thousands of ‘illiterate men and women of an educated city’ descend upon the lake and act foolishly to negate the efforts of IMC and TNV. The entire activity at Sirpur Lake was anti-environment.

At least for next year, police, IMC and administration should be on alert mode in advance.

Those who are doing this must be told sternly NOT to do it again. Sirpur belongs to each and every Indorean. But no one has the right to pollute it.


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