Actress Trisha with Sadhguru.
With over four crore trees planted and more than 200 crore more to go, the Cauvery Calling campaign is hoping to revive the river and its surrounding areas in the decades to come. Find out how it’s being done and why the call of the river is so compelling to celebrities and regular people alike…
Of late, we have seen that the world is coming together to save the environment. People have been taking to social media to spread awareness and various campaigns have been created. Cauvery Calling is one such initiative that’s gaining popularity recently as celebrities like Kangana Ranaut, Tamannaah Bhatia, KL Rahul and Upendra Rao have been taking steps to spread the word.
The aim of Cauvery Calling is to revive the water level in the Cauvery belt of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. While there are many ways to do so, this campaign has chosen the simple method of planting trees across the river region. The organisers of the campaign aim to grow 242 crore trees in the Cauvery belt by adopting agro-forestry. As of today, the campaign has raised enough support to plant around four crore trees. This plan gained popularity when Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev, founder of the Isha Foundation and this initiative, started a biking rally to spread awareness. His ride from Talacauvery to Thiruvarur, covering the Cauvery basin across two weeks, ended on September 17.
Mehul Jain, a strategist from Bengaluru, took part in this campaign and contributed towards the growth of hundred-plus trees. He says, "I think such initiatives are the need of the hour. All our riverbeds are drying up because of an extensive use by mankind. To sustain in the future, we must take action. The impact of such actions will be seen only in the long run, and that’s okay. The point is to have a good future. This is why I contributed towards reviving Cauvery."
Airline employee Nidhi Modi observes, "This initiative made it very clear to us that the effect cannot be seen at present, although planting trees across the entire course of the river will surely have a positive impact in future. Today, we see so many environmental issues coming up and we ourselves are the solution. My only concern is, that on the one hand, we are contributing to this initiative, but on the other, our present green cover is getting depleted. We must protect it as well. There is no point of growing one tree while chopping another."
Water activist and educator Vishwanath Srikantaiah is popularly known as the ZenRainMan from Bengaluru. He says, "This campaign is perhaps a single step and much more has to be done to revive the Cauvery. Say, for example, as contributors, we have to ensure in reducing pollution at the highest level; we should implement rain water harvesting throughout the southern region; we have to avoid human intervention in Kodagu and Hemavathi regions; and we also need to also create river-maintenance institutions, which will monitor the health of the river on a daily basis." Talking about the impact and idea of this campaign, he further adds, "The real reason for draught in the Cauvery region is that we are growing a lot of water-intensive crops. That needs to change so that ground water is charged. This campaign is the first of many hundred such campaigns.
It’s a very good foundation to build upon. It is clearly an initiative for future benefits, not the present."