The Union Home Minister, Shri Amit Shah planted a sapling of the ‘peepal’ tree at the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) Campus in Gurugram today to mark launch of the CAPFs nationwide tree plantation drive undertaken by the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs). Speaking on the occasion, Shri Amit Shah said, “I applaud our CAPFs and pay gratitude to the brave Jawans who are not only providing security to the nation but have also undertaken this massive campaign to plant more than 1.37 crore saplings of long lasting trees across the country.” He said the CAPF personnel are not only providing security at various locations across the country such as airports, and railway stations and fighting the scourge of terrorism, but are also contributing in the nation’s battle against the COVID-19 pandemic. Paying tributes to the more than 31 CAPF Coronoa Warriors who have lost their lives to the pandemic, the Home Minister said their sacrifice will not go in vain and the contribution of the CAPFs will be etched in gold when the battle against COVID19 is recalled.
Shri Amit Shah said this tree plantation campaign is being undertaken at a time when the world is faced with this pandemic. He said the battle against COVID-19 is being carried out under the leadership of the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi with people’s participation. Today India is leading a successful fight in managing the pandemic in the country.At a time when the health services of even the most developed countries were collapsing under its impact, the whole world was concerned how would India, – such a big densely populated country with a federal structure, fight this pandemic, but today the most successful fight against this pandemic has been fought in India under the leadership of the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi. The Union Home Minister said we are on a strong pedestal in the fight against COVID-19 under the leadership of the Prime Minister with the motto ‘One People, One Thought, One Nation’.
The Home Minister said across the world only governments are fighting this pandemic, but here in India, 130 crore people besides State Governments are united in fighting this threat. Nowhere across the country is there is a state of panic, in fact we are committed in facing this challenge and are resolute in overcoming this pandemic. In this fight, our CAPFs are playing a very important role, – whether it be markets, railway stations, whether state governments have sought support in managing crowded places or the local police have sought the support of our security forces in enforcing the lockdown, the Jawans of our security forces have not been found wanting. They have set an example before the nation and the world by being alert during deployment on COVID-19 duty, without bothering for their own life and safety.
The Union Home Minister said that the nationwide CAPF tree plantation drive has set a target of 1.37 crore saplings. Shri Amit Shah, quoting from an ancient Hindu text, said a tree is worth more than ten sons.
[A pond is equal to 10 wells, a lake equal to ten ponds;
One son is worth ten lakes and one tree is worth ten sons]
Shri Amit Shah said we should harness natural resources and not exploit them. He said our sages had long ago emphasised that one must not exploit Nature but instead must support Nature. However, today due to consumerism, this balance has been disturbed and as a result we are facing the challenges of Climate Change and Global Warming. Due to exploitation of Nature, the ozone layer is depleting. We are emitting more carbon di-oxide and carbon mono-oxide into the environment and without the ozone layer life is not possible.
Emphasizing on the important role played by trees in reducing pollution, Shri Amit Shah said that various varieties of saplings have been chosen in this plantation drive such as peepal, jamun, neem, vatavriksh, burgud based on their oxygen giving capability and abilities to survive in different seasons. He said several programmes are being run on environmental protection but only tree plantation can check pollution and save the Earth.
Shri Amit Shah said the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi participated in the Paris World Environment Summit where he cautioned the world against overexploitation of Nature and the world accepted the Modi Formula in the Paris Declaration on tackling Climate Change. As a result of the Prime Minister’s efforts, the International Solar Alliance was set up in India, he said. During Shri Narendra Modi’s tenure as Chief Minister, Gujarat became the first state in India where a separate department was set up on environmental protection. The Prime Minister has also stressed on use of green fuels and has encouraged the use of ethanol blended petrol, Shri Amit Shah said. The Union Home Minister pointed out that various programmes of the Government of India such as 8 crore free cylinders to rural households are also environment friendly. Shri Amit Shah closed his address by saying that the CAPFs must ensure that the tree plantation drive should not be seen as the conclusion. It must be ensured that the saplings are taken care of till they are able to sustain on their own.
On the occasion Shri Amit Shah planted a sapling of the ‘peepal’ tree. The Union Home Secretary, Shri Ajay Kumar Bhalla, DGs of the 7 CAPFs and senior officials were also present. To mark the plantation drive, more than 10 lakh saplings are being planted at various locations of the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) throughout the length and breadth of the country.
Inspired by the vision of the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and under the leadership of the Union Home Minister Shri Amit Shah, the CAPFs (Assam Rifles, BSF, CISF, CRPF, ITBP, NSG and SSB) have initiated this tree plantation drive since February, 2020 with an aim to plant more than 1.37 crore trees during this year. A timetable was drawn up on the appropriate species to be planted in specified sectors and a nodal officer appointed for the purpose. It was decided that as far as possible local species should be planted and at least half of the total plantation be constituted of long lasting trees with a lifecycle of 100 years or more. Besides, care was taken that medicinal and environment friendly trees be preferred.
The tree plantation by the Union Home Minister has inspired commitment of the CAPF personnel towards environmental issues. The tree plantation drive is an initiative of the CAPFs towards Green India and underlines the resolve of the paramilitary forces to protect the environment apart from ensuring internal and external security. These saplings are being planted by the CAPF personnel by contributing voluntary labour. Till 30th June, 2020 more than 20 lakh saplings have been planted by all CAPFs across different regions of the country. The CAPFs will undertake similar campaigns in the years to come.