Kochi: Environmental activists in the state under the banner of ‘Save Western Ghats Movement’ are set to take up the issue of western ghats conservation on the global arena. A meeting held in Kochi on Friday to discuss a three-day programme to mark the 30th anniversary of the historic ‘Save Western Ghats March’ decided to take up the issue at national and international levels.
“Western ghats has a crucial role in deciding the climatic condition of not only India, but countries in South-Asian region. Unrestrained mining, tree cutting and destruction of grassland in western ghats will seriously upset the climate. Since Kerala government is least bothered about its conservation, we are seeking the support of national and international agencies for this. A formal request will be submitted to the embassies of South-Asian countries urging them to support the movement,” Mr John Peruvanthanam, member of national organising committee, told reporters here.
The green activists have also approached other states like Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Goa, Maharashtra and Gujarat to chalk out an action plan for protecting western ghats. Though not part of western ghats, Andhra Pradesh government also is supporting the initiative, he added. An international convention will be organised in Delhi in October or November which will have the participation from various countries.
A series of programmes will be organised at Maharaja’s College, Ernakulam, and YMCA, Aluva, March 2, 3 and 4 to mark the 30th anniversary of the movement. Former union minister Jairam Ramesh will inaugurate the anniversary celebrations at Maharaja’s College on March 3 while green activist Medha Patkar will launch the international campaign. The ‘Save Western Ghats March’ held in 1987 and 1988 is considered as one of the landmark events in environmental activism in the country and has become the model for numerous similar campaigns.