By Our Staff Reporter
Dehradun, 24 May: Noted environmentalist Dr Anil Joshi spread a part of the ashes of the late Sunderlal Bahuguna, veteran environmentalist and green crusader of India known the world over for the ‘Chipko Movement, at Sunder Van, HESCO Village, Shuklapur.
Even as the whole country mourns the sudden demise of Sunderlal Bahuguna, the need is being felt to retrieve his message on saving the environment and the ethos of his environmental activism for years to come, so that future generations can take inspiration. Dr Anil Joshi has made an attempt to do so by spreading the ashes throughout Sunder Van, a forest in Dehradun named after Sunderlal Bahuguna.
Sunder Van was established in 2009 on the occasion of Sunderlal Bahuguna’s birthday. There was a close gathering of his fellow environmentalists and friends on that day. And amongst them, it was decided that a forest be set up to honour him. Spread over an area of 5 hectares, the forest has a variety of flora and fauna. In fact, the first sapling of Sunder Van was planted by the legendary environmentalist himself.
“Today he is not amongst us and we have always believed that there is one more way to keep a person alive for eternity. And that way tells us that the ashes be distributed amongst the trees and plants of almighty nature. I think that there can be no greater tribute to that pristine soul than the forest, Sunder Van. Sunder Van will be enriched and nourished by his ashes,” says Dr Anil Joshi.
Dr Joshi further says that Sunderlal Bahuguna had always wanted to create an ecological park that would be a home for animals. He imagined a park that would also be a food park for wild animals and Sunder Van was established along those lines.
Joshi feels this forest is going to become a focal point of the memories and contributions of Sunderlal Bahuguna. He adds that the veteran environmentalist’s memories would be showcased through this forest and the story of his contribution towards the environment would be communicated to people through Sunder Van.
Dr Joshi walked throughout the forest and scattered a little bit of Sunderlal Bahuguna’s ashes everywhere. “This has been done on behalf of everybody, all friends and fellow environmentalists who have been connected with him,” he says.