World over, June 5th is celebrated as World Environment Day. It’s that time of the year when people across the world come together to talk about the environment and how we need to make a change today, so we can help nurture the planet for tomorrow. In Bangalore, nothing could have said it better than the Parisara Habba.
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Organised by the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB), the Parisara Habba, or the Festival of the Environment, is a two-day event held on June 5th and 6th at Kanteerava Indoor Stadium. While KSPCB does organise the event almost every year on the occasion of World Environment Day, this year’s edition was quite special.
NS Ramakanth (or Anna Hasiru, as he is fondly referred to) of Solid Waste Management Round Table who was a coordinator for the event says, “The format has been changed this year. It used to only be an award ceremony where people spoke. This year, in addition to the award ceremony, we have gathered eco-warriors across the city to showcase what they are doing. People can come, interact with them and draw inspiration from them.” Regarding the name of the event – Parisara Habba, he says, “It’s not merely a day; it is a festival, a celebration! Therefore, it has aptly been named Parisara Habba.”
Parisara Habba has a lot in store for everyone. With eco-friendly stalls, talks by experts, film screenings and more, you can be sure to get a fair perspective on the problems that the city is facing. What makes it all the more worthwhile is that you will find solutions to these problems. Waste management issues in your apartment? Head to the SWMRT stall. Want to clean up your neighbourhood lake? Make your way to the stall that is manned by One Bengaluru for Lakes. Want to start growing your own vegetables? Talk to the Garden City Farmers. Looking to shift to eco-friendly sanitary products? You can even buy a menstrual cup!
The people you meet at the stalls will certainly help you to start making small changes in your life that will go a long way in protecting the environment. And with Bangalore’s garbage woes ever the bane of our lives, it came as no surprise that 12 of the 35 stalls at the venue were related to waste management.
In addition to the stalls, on June 6th, the Habba will play host to a variety of presentations and panel discussions with some of the city’s foremost subject matter experts. Some of the topics that will be covered are:
Lake restoration through community action
Menstrual Hygiene: Management and environmental considerations
From Garbage City to Garden City
Organic Urban Terrace Farming
The schedule for June 6th can be found here.
Bangalore’s own wins state-level environment award
Solid Waste Management Round Table (SWMRT) was one among the three winners of the state-level environment award. The group received a cash award of Rs 1 lakh from the Chief Minister, Siddaramaiah.
To most Citizen Matters’ readers, the SWMRT team certainly needs no introduction. The group is one of the foremost authorities in Bengaluru on sustainable waste management. With experts and committed volunteers like NS Ramakanth, Sandya Narayan, Malini Parmar, Lalitha Mondreti, Vani Murthy, Savitha Hiremath, and many others on board, SWMRT is pretty much the go-to group for any questions one might have related to waste management.
SWMRT has put up five stalls to address the issues of waste disposal, segregation at source, organic waste processing, recycling and reducing landfill waste.
Here are some snapshots from Parisara Habba, featuring some of the inspiring people and organisations that Citizen Matters bumped into.
Guides to composting at home
If you are looking to start making a difference in your lives, and to the people around you, there’s no better time than now. Make your way to Kanteerava Stadium for the Parisara Habba. While the event is scheduled for only two days, the lessons you pick up from there, will certainly prove useful for the rest of your lives, and for the lives of the generations to come.
To close, here’s some food for thought from NS Ramakanth:
Save resources, save the earth.
Our waste is our own responsibility.
Think before you throw.
From all of us at Citizen Matters, here’s hoping that we celebrate every day as World Environment Day.