Bhubaneswar: Silver-haired Dhaneswar Sahoo (65) is doing his bit to protect the environment, by creating awareness among the people to plant trees in a unique style by pedaling away on the streets with a placard on his cycle carrying an Odia message, ‘Gachha Lagao, Jeevan Banchao (Plant Trees, Save Lives).
This old man embarked his cycling expedition since 2014 with the sole aim to sensitise people on the importance of planting trees and has travelled to Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Uttarakhand, New Delhi on his cycle.
A resident of Kermeli village in Sohela block, Dhaneswar got disturbed by the large scale destruction during the 1999 super cyclone in the State. He was quick to understand the imminent need for awareness to save the environment. So he started his campaign by initially distributing saplings and teaching about the benefits of planting trees. He himself has planted numerous trees and has currently set out on his cycle to spread awareness regarding the importance of planting trees.
“I started this cycling campaign in 2014. I just want to sensitise the people regarding the ill effects of rapid industrialisation and associated activities on the environment. As these are taking their toll on natural green cover, it is imperative to plant at least one tree per person annually on a regular basis. I plead to the youngsters of the nation to do it and it can be done during the month of July (rainy season),” implored the green activist.
“I have been always inspired by the people at the ground level but no government authorities are aiding me in any way,” he complained.
Currently, he is touring all across the nation on his bicycle and his mission is to cover the remaining States of the country. Miraculously, age has not deterred or dampened his zeal to safeguard the earth’s environment in his own distinctive style.