Save Himalaya to save the humanity says environmentalist Dr. Anil P Joshi during AIC lecture series at Amity University

On the occasion of Himalaya Day, Amity International Centre invited environmentalist Padamshree Dr. Anil P Joshi, Founder – Himalayan Environmental Studies & Conservation, Mr. Dinesh Juyal, Executive Editor – Amar Ujala and Dr. Madhulika Singh, Director-AIGIRS to deliver talk on the issues related to Himalaya. This was 151st lecture under the AIC lecture series.

Dr. Ashok K. Chauhan, Founder President – Amity Group welcomed the distinguished speakers and said that time has come to think seriously about the conservation of Himalaya. Dr. Chauhan said that Amity has always initiated projects which can help in the progress of the Nation and the importance of Himalaya is such that we must act on an urgent basis. Dr. Chauhan announced the launch of Amity Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ACIMOD) comprising of a high level team which under the guidance of Maj. Gen. K.J. Singh, Group Vice Chancellor as Mentor, Dr. Pankaj Tewari as Convener and Dr. Tanu Jindal as Co-Convener to make action plans so that concrete activities can be initiated. Dr. Chauhan also announced that a group of 40 persons from Amity who would undertake a trip to the Himalayan region to evaluate the issues of Himalaya and preparing an action plan for its conservation.

Padamshree Dr. Anil P Joshi, Founder – Himalayan Environmental Studies & Conservation while speaking on the topic “Gross Environment Product (GEP): A new growth measure” said that Himalaya is spread into the nine states. Issues on which new state of Uttarakhand was formed are still unresolved. Dr. Joshi said that if Himalaya is not conserved than the disaster will begin from plains region. “We have never considered Himalaya with life and have always exploited its resources. Around 3.8% of country’s population lives in Uttarakhand but 65% of country’s population drinks the water of Ganga and Yamuna whereas the villagers living in Himalaya themselves do not get adequate water supply. Every year 20 tonnes per hectare of fertile soil flows down from the Himalaya and deposits at the river basins resulting in the green revolution in Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh”, said Dr. Joshi. Dr. Joshi raised question to the audience that ‘is it only the duty of Himalayan people to raise the issues of Himalaya and not of other regions’? He said that one can not purchase resources and if the vegetation cover of Himalaya is not conserved than there will be nothing left for our generations. While raising the concept of Gross Environment Product (GEP), Dr. Joshi said that Gross Domestic Product is meant for Corporate but GEP is an indicator of Common Man. Country can not grow without including ecology. GEP shows how much area of forest cover has increased annually, what is the increase in vegetation, how much increase in yield. Through GEP, Rural India can also contribute in the nation building, remarked Dr. Joshi.

Mr. Dinesh Juyal, Executive Editor – Amar Ujala delivered his talk on Himalaya: A Source of Life wherein he said that Himalaya is the umbrella of India and today this umbrella is not in good shape. Changing the balance of nature will result in catastrophe. One can see that heavy rains have destructed the villages of Himalaya and there was very scanty rainfall in plains region like Delhi NCR. Mr. Juyal said that during his childhood he had seen the cloud formation and now he is seeing clod bursting. Every year around 10 lakhs pilgrims go to Badrinath and around 5 lakh to Kedarnath but how many of them ever visited the remote villages of Himalaya? The life of villages on hills is very tough, remarked Mr. Juyal.

Dr. Madhulika Singh, Director-AIGIRS presented her lecture on the topic Vegetation Change Detection in Himalayan Region - A Geo-Informatics approach. Dr. Singh said that when we talk about Himalaya, we talk about vegetation cover. Due to urbanization and global warming the vegetation cover is reduced and wild life habitation is decreasing alarmingly. Dr. Singh opined that Remote Sensing and Geographic Information System are being used effectively to monitor and map the changes in vegetation cover in Himalaya region. Climate change is the main culprit of diminishing vegetation cover in the Himalayan region remarked Dr. Singh.

The lecture saw humungous participation by Members of Management, Directors, HOIs/HODs, faculty members of Amity University.

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