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Environmental pollution, your concern!!

Surely you like to live in a clean home, use a clean bathroom and like a clean neighbourhood.
Why so?
A clean home, a clean bathroom and a clean neighbourhood makes you happy and you feel that it is healthy.
Then, why would you not feel happier in a cleaner and healthier world?
After all it is not just a question of feeling happier, it is a vital question of existence.
We know that the world is being filled with toxins, harmful gasses and industrial waste at an alarming rate.
We know that the ozone layer is depleating and the climate is heating up.
We know that we are nearing a situation far more devastating then any war and we know that this terrible situation is placing the entire planet with all the species inhabiting it in danger.
We know all this from school books, college books, magazines and TV shows, and feel the increased temperature.
YET ....... WHO CARES?
Who wants to change the lifestyle?
Who wants to stop this illusion of unnecessary consumerism? Who wants to put an end to this attitude of wanting more and more material goods, in the quest of the mirage of happiness?
The society is being led to the abyss of doom by unscrupulous politicians, their cronies, and big multinational business companies for their vested interests.
These corrupt politicians with their cronies and these business organizations have themselves become entangled in vicious circles created by their own greed for money and power and are finding it impossible to think of any healthier option.
Political pressurization by certain politicians who want to hold on to power by hook or by crook and psychological pressurization through advertising campaigns of many large business organizations are creating a biased situation entrapping common people.
Most Government officials are more often working to support the hypocritic propaganda propagated by politicians and big business houses than being concerned sincerely about vital environmental problems. After all they have to maintain their jobs and to think of their pay packets. Some of them even fish in this dirty water in dubious ways filling their own pockets. Scientists have made the gloomy prophecies, everyone is feeling the heat, yet the general attitude is to "let the other person do it" or "let some one else find a magic solution".
There is no magic solution and no one is going to do anything unless you do it yourself.
The hope for an environment conscious society begins with you.
There are laws to curb environmental pollution, yet no law can curb consumerism and laws are useless unless they are properly implimented.
Consumerism produces unnecessary industrial waste and wastes power and this excess use of power contributes to the climatic chaos.
Simple living, the use of environment friendly products and proper waste disposal will make a big difference. Don’t waste power, conserve fuel and water as much as possible.
Be conscious of the need to clean up the environment and speak out against polluting elements. Don’t be fooled by showy advertisements.
Don’t waste money on unnecessary stuff. Encourage organic food. Minimize the use of plastic bags. Avoid junk food and teach children the benefits of natural open spaces and greenery.
Plant trees, or at least bushes, and love Mother Nature. Spend more time with nature, in parks woodlands and beaches.
Try to build up your own character by changing your attitude. Get rid of greed. Greed and corruption never made any one really happy. Considerate attitude for the society can make you feel better.
Don’t believe in profit oriented publicity, and learn to see through political propagandas.
Remember, it is your planet, your life and your future that are at stake.
So, act now. It is now or never.
- by Prabal Pramanik
Copyright by Prabal Pramanik


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In Dhar block, in western Punjab, India, forests are being systematically destroyed, garbage is piling on, but who cares?

This year 2010 there has been something unprecedented in magnitude in Dhar block. This year, in twenty seven years there has been the maximum amount of forest fires in Dhar block and more forest area has been damaged or destroyed with consequent losses of flora and fauna.
The fires have been widespread and it is impossible that they have been caused "naturally" without human hand. There is a forest department of Punjab, but are they really and sincerely concerned about the forest fires?
Many questions pour in concerning these forest fires which were certainly created by human beings.

1. What precautions were taken to avoid forest fires by the department of forests?

2. How could the forest fires rage for such a long time if the department of forests had taken adequate precautions?

3. Since the department of forest, Punjab government is keeping mum about this massive and terrible destruction, their sincerity about their work is in question.

4. Are forest department officials to blame for this evident lack of the sense of duty and their attitude to shun the responsibility?

5. Have any truthful record been maintained about the fauna and flora that were destroyed?

6. Does this situation point accusing finger at the concerned department of forest officials and suggest some dubious involvement?

7. The hush hush attitude of the officials concerned only signify that many unholy truths will be revealed and skeletons will tumble out of cupboards if the real answers to these questions are received.

Could forest fires of such magnitude have raged for so many days if there was a sincere, dedicated and efficient forest department above corruption here?
Lots of reports have been published in several news papers and photographs published, but apparently the forest department officials think that it will all pass away with time and they will not have to shoulder any responsibility.
Forest department is maintained with public money so each paisa of the pay packets the employees of the department receive is from public money. Some people feel that maintaining a department that is careless and inefficient is a sheer waste of public money.
Are all the data provided by the department of forest, Govt. Of Punjab credible?
Where lack of the sense of responsibility is evident to general public, the people in general do not believe in data provided by the concerned officials of that department. Many people of this area have expressed their lack of faith in forest department of Punjab.
The situation betokens of a system where wrong doers get away with impunity after committing felony.
This ecological disaster on large scale in the hilly area of Dhar block was brought about by a system that has no love or respect for ecology or for the maintaince of the forest wealth of the nation.
If the guilty people are allowed to think that they cannot be booked and can go scot free, more such disasters are to come with evil results.
The concerned officials have to be made accountable and punished property for the lack of the sense of responsibility that caused so much damage.
If charged, undoubtedly the concerned officials will try to put up a lot of lame excuses to cover up their inefficiency and seek political protection but modern democracy can change the situation. People are becoming conscious and have started speaking out against corruption and irresponsible officials.
The change in the attitude of the public is being ushered in, so the people with vested interests who think in a myopic manner that they should get more money even if the world is destroyed,, are despised by the common people of this area.
There are laws against criminal negligence to duty, and officials whose neglect of their duties have caused so much loss can be charged with those acts. Unfortunately as "the system" supports officials with insincere and inefficient attitude, presenting questionable data nothing happens. So what is the future?
Now, the question of garbage piling up by main roads and by other village lanes and drains in Dhar block will be discussed.
Huge amount of waste is being piled by the roads as there are no proper solid waste disposal system in the panchayets (local self governments) in Dhar Block.
Very often the sarpanches or the heads of the local self governments have very little or no education.
Often they are illiterate and just can sign names. Very often politicians take care to see that mostly little or uneducated people are in the self governments as they are sure that ignorant and uneducated people will not be able to oppose their power hungry and anti-people politics.
Such people have no feeling for public health and progress.
Garbage is piling up by the road side and the concerned "panchayets" are allowing this to happen without having any concern that development starts with cleanliness.
Drains are being clogged up with non-biodegradable waste and local cattle openly feed on waste and plastic bags.
This is unsightly and poses great health hazzards, but who cares?
Road side garbage creates a very bad impression on Indian tourists and forign tourists who travel along this road to Dalhousie and Chamba, yet the panchayet heads who are engaged in narrow bickerings over shallow politacal power mongerings fail to understand this.
Dumping garbage by the main road is illegal too, and there are laws for solid waste disposal, but unless laws are enforced they remain only in books.
Panchayet Pradhans (the heads of local self governments) can be charged with the violation of these laws and made to pay for their gross neglect to duty and careless attitude.
Garbage disposal vats and pits could have been made so the garbage could have been burnt and disposed off regularly.
If the closed garbage disposal system with the chimney is built it is even better. The question is, who cares for all this?
Unless people are themselves conscious about the need for a clean neighborhood the situation will worsen. Dumping garbage on the road is unhealthy too for the local people.
If the local people remain mute spectators and don’t adopt methods to properly dispose off waste, the entire area will be affected with dirt and filth. Moreover uncivilized values will prevail and the next generation will also learn that it is all right to make the world dirty and not to take any responsibility for making it so.
Again the only real way to change this situation is to make people conscious about the need of a cleaner environment and initiate them to take steps against arbitary and unscientific garbage dumping.
Prabal Pramanik’s Academy of Arts through multidimensional programmes is trying to spread the consciousness about the need for a better and cleaner eco-system that would give the world a greater chance of survival.
Ecological balance is fragile and many aspects of nature, such as wildlife population and rare herbs can never be regained once lost. Even large trees that are destroyed fast by forest fires had taken many years to grow. Only the spread of healthy and honest values may change the negative situation.
- by Prabal Pramanik
Copyright by Prabal Pramanik

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Under the Environmental Protection Act 1986, regulatory bodies as the State Pollution Control Boards have powers to initiate criminal prosecution against companies/persons who fail to comply with the environmental regulation. It is triable in the First Class Magistrate Court (maximum fine of Rs 100,000 or 2 years imprisonment or both). Regulatory authorities can also initiate criminal prosecution under the law of 'Public Nuisance' defined in the Indian Penal Code 1860.

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In the sub-mountainous Dhar block of north-western Punjab in India, where these photographs were taken on 5th June 2010, “the World Environment Day”, there is very little awareness for the ecological balance and healthy environment.
Though people may talk about it in some schools, very few people actually realize the need to do something in the practical way to save the environment. Generally in a place where education is only a vocational training and the residents rarely can see beyond their own personal and family needs in a very narrow perimeter that excludes social consciousness, the attempt to save the environment is thought to be time wasting unnecessary effort.
The local self governments called “Panchayets” are run by mostly people who understand very little about the need to preserve the environment.
The concerned government officials are interested in their pay packets and promotions only and reality shows that development of this hilly area in effective and sincere way through co-ordinated and absolutely transparent methods, does not really interest them. Most politicians concerned are more interested in political gimmicks and “dramas” than honest and transparent dealings.
So big talk and little work has become the system here. Very often when malpractices happen, politicians and their cronies (chamchas) ignore the situation, obviously for their own dubious interests. They are afraid of being exposed themselves as they often attempt to coverup details about their own questionable situations.
So the only way that the environment can be saved is by making the common people of this area conscious about the need to preserve environment. It is an urgent and vital need and affects the safety of not only this area with fragile ecosystem but of the entire planet.
Prabal Pramanik’s Academy of Arts has undertaken a multi-dimensional co-ordinated programme to save the environment of this area by launching a campaign against the disruption of the ecosystem.
As a part of this programme proper and detailed recording is being done about this subject and these records are being analyzed for data processing in a systematic way.
News with photographs supplied by the Academy concerning this campaign have already appeared in several newspapers.
An important movie is being made and will be released soon. Posters are being designed and printed and these will be supplied to various school of this area.
Seminars on ecological balance will be held to educate people on this subject and leaflets are being distributed also to spread the message for the need to create a clean environment.
Poaching goes on in the area in the name of “Shikar” and the killing of wild birds and animals can be stopped only if the people themselves understand the need to preserve wildlife.
A comprehensive and detailed booklet on the “Project Environment” will be published. As our work goes on, the news of our activities will be given in the academy website. We welcome your opion about our work. You can e-mail us.

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These photographs were taken in Dhar Block in Punjab, India. The pristine beauty of Dhar Block in Punjab, India is being damaged with pollution and neglect.

Movie on environmental pollution of Dhar Block   ........   Click here

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