By OUR STAFF REPORTER
RISHIKESH, 13 Mar: The Dinesh Shahra Foundation (DSF) has announced that it will develop a ‘Rudraksha Vana’ in Uttarkashi district. The initiative was announced during Green Gold Day celebrations held at Parmarth Niketan, here, by Dinesh Shahra, Chairman, DSF, in the presence Swami Chidanand Saraswati. A team of forestry experts from DSF will soon be deployed for location identification and creation of a blueprint for the development of the proposed Rudraksha Van in Uttarkashi. Apart from ecological benefits, the initiative will create employment in priority sectors for the locals and help promote tourism in the region. “We are delighted to announce this noble initiative on Green Gold Day with the blessings of Swami Chidanand Saraswati. Rudraksha, which literally means ‘the tears of Shiva’, has special significance in Sanatan Dharma. The proposed Rudraksha Vana project combines two core causes of DSF – ecology and promoting Indian spirituality,” added Dinesh Shahra. “The development of natural forests in the region will control erosion of catchment areas of the holy Ganga. It will also lead to the economic and development of the village community,” he added. “We are glad to partner DSF in this green as well as spiritual project. Dinesh Shahra has been championing green initiatives for a long time now and has been instrumental in planting lakhs of trees across the country. I am happy that, today, he has expressed his desire to plant over 10,000 Rudraksha saplings and create a Rudraksha Vana in the home of Ganga and Yamuna,” declared Swami Chidanand Saraswati. Green Gold Day marks the birthday of philanthropist and agriculturist Dinesh Shahra. Every year, thousands of saplings are planted to enhance green cover and mitigate the effects of global warming across the length and breadth of the country. Volunteers from Dinesh Shahra Foundation have nurtured lakhs of trees in India in line with DSF’s vision for sustainable development. In this year’s programme, Dinesh Shahra personally oversaw the plantation activates conducted at Parmarth Niketan, Rudraksha as an evergreen tree is known for its material and spiritual properties. Its fruits have medicinal value apart from its application as a mean for ‘namsmaran’ or recitation of Shiva mantra. Some of its beads are considered precious due to their rarity and special utilities.