Home Dehradun Include GEP in election manifestos: Anil Joshi

Include GEP in election manifestos: Anil Joshi

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By Our Staff Reporter    

DEHRADUN, 13 April: Come Lok Sabha elections in India, environmental concerns have taken a backseat.
Renowned social activist Anil P Joshi, who floated the idea of Gross Environmental Product (GEP), a green GDP, to measure the overall economic growth in India, has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other top leaders to include it in their manifestos.
“If we have to achieve sustainable economic growth, we must bring in gross environmental product (GEP) to balance the growth rate in India,” said Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan awardee Joshi.
Dwelling upon the need of GEPJoshi said since natural resources especially forest, soil and air have observed sharp decline due to poor management and over exploitation, it becomes imperative that the country must have an appropriate mechanism for the periodic review of the economic growth in true sense. “The status of our natural resources must be reviewed periodically as well as their growth so that we must understand what we lost and what we gain every year,” he said.
Giving several examples where the trees were felled in the name of the developmental projects, Joshi pointed out that only a prudent approach will bring a balance between nature and human activities. “This will only be possible when we also measure through some indices growth of soil, water, forest, air etc. Annual gross environmental product of natural resources can only serve such purpose,” said Joshi, who is heading the National Nature Network and HESCO, the organizations working in the environmental fields.
Stating that GDP simply reflects the growth of sectors like infrastructure, industries and education, Joshi said “We deliberately forgot that such development can only offer luxury to a handful of people and does not serve the fundamental needs of everybody.”
Joshi has sent letters to Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and BJP President JP Nadda and Congress chief Mallikarajun Kharge to include GEP in election manifestos.
He said it was imperative to include water, jungles and soil as a matter of new consciousness in the country.
Anil Joshi also urged the leaders to celebrate Basant Panchami as “nature day” every year in India because the occasion is naturally environmental-centric.