Steps under Swachh Bharat Campaign being taken in Zoos & Protected Areas

swachh bharat
swachh bharat

As part of the effort of the Government to accelerate efforts to achieve total sanitation and cleanliness by 2ndOctober 2019 under the Swachh Bharat Mission, Swachh Bharat Fortnight is being organised theme-wise by different Ministries.  Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Shri Ajay Narayan Jha and Secretary, Ministry of Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation, Shri Parameswaran Iyer, outlined the steps and initiatives on Swacch Bharat Mission during Swacchhta Pakhwada (fortnight) from June 1-15.  Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, also made a Powerpoint presentation on the occasion.

Speaking on the occasion, Shri Jha said that in order to focus its efforts on reaching out to the community and the citizens, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change decided to organise its theme campaign of Swachhta in National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries, Tiger Reserves and Zoos, where lakhs of visitors, especially youth and children come. The Protected Areas (PAs) are spread over approximately 1.61 lakh sq. km and about 32 lakh visitors come annually to the Tiger Reserves alone.  Delhi Zoo has about 25 lakh visitors annually.  Though cleanliness is a standard management practice for PAs and MoEF&CC extends assistance to States on this aspect also, as per the Action Plans proposed by the States, the campaigns were designed to focus on sensitising the visitors and tourists on issues such as solid waste management, prevention of littering and overall cleanliness of the park and surrounding areas.

All the Principal Chief Conservators of Forest, Chief Wildlife Wardens, Director of Delhi Zoo, Central Zoo Authority, Wildlife Institute of India,   National   Tiger  Conservation  Authority, Wildlife Crime Control Bureau and other agencies associated with the Wildlife Wing of the Ministry  were  involved  in  the  campaign.   Further, in order to extend the scope of Swachhta Campaign to include waste management concepts and recent regulations, a specific mandate of this Ministry, special drives were launched in 10 select Protected Areas** to sensitise the visitors on the regulatory regime for waste management. In particular, segregation, transportation and processing of wet waste at source as well as segregation of bio-degradable waste from other type of wastes were demonstrated.

The special drives were carried out with the assistance of experts from the State Pollution Control Boards, Municipalities and other civic agencies.  During the course of these campaigns, several new ideas, suggestions and operating procedures were collected.  These will be standardised into Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for management of littering and solid waste management in and around the National Parks, Wildlife Sanctuaries, Protected Areas and Zoos.

The Ministry has decided to sustain the Swachhta Campaign throughout the year to make it into a regular feature of management of various National Parks, etc. and spread the message of Swachh Bharat through the lakhs of visitors who come to these places.

            The next Pakhwada for the Ministry will be in the month of August, in which eco-clubs and youth will also be involved in the campaign for pollution free environment.

            ** Ten Protected Areas taken up for Special Drive:-

No. Name of the PA State
1. Coringa Wildlife Sanctuary Andhra Pradesh
2. Gir Wildlife Sanctuary & National Park Gujarat
3. Kanha Tiger Reserve Madhya Pradesh
4. Tadoba – Andhari Tiger Reserve Maharashtra
5. Flamingo Sanctuary Maharashtra
6. Nagarhole Tiger Reserve Karnataka
7. Periyar Tiger Reserve Kerala
8. Sariska Tiger Reserve Rajasthan
9. Mudumalai Tiger Reserve Tamil Nadu
10. Jim Corbett Tiger Reserve Uttarakhand

            The Ministry carried out various activities relating to Swachhta such as weeding of files, cleaning of office premises and establishments under them. Hon’ble Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change inaugurated the campaign on 1st June 2016.  The Swachhta Pledge was administered to the officers and staff.  The Ministry has also started a system to make it a zero waste building.  Waste generated inside the premises is separated at source and deposited in different bins.  ‘Chintan’, an NGO working in the field, collects it for disposal.  Compost, which will be generated in the process, will be obtained by the Ministry for its garden and surroundings.  A campaign through puppet show, stickers and posters has also been launched to make it a plastic-free building.

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