LET THE ENVIRONMENT ALSO ENJOY FESTIVALS
Our environment is a silent observer and absorber of all human activities. It has been a part of the universe since its inception and gradually it became our responsibility to help sustain, preserve and expand it. But are we doing it every single day? Planting a tree one day and using plastic the next day does not allow anyone to call themselves guardians of the environment. Gone are the days when simple and small steps could bring about a change in the environment. With the rapid growth of urbanization and industrialization, being environment-friendly should become a lifestyle. It must be rooted deep with one’s conscious.
In India, while people are trying very hard to take the eco-friendly route by segregating waste and banning plastic from their daily lives, the thought tends to go amiss at times after the arrival of the festive season.
Festivals in India are elaborate and involve materials which might potentially harm the environment. The ritual of immersion, in this case, could sometimes affect our environment. Our idols, which are made of clay are immersed in rivers and seas on the last day of the festival. This could cause a significant amount of water pollution harming underwater plants and organisms. In the larger scheme of festivals, the overcrowding of people and their misuse of the waterbodies also at times unknowingly add to the growing rate of pollution. Given the number of idols in each Indian city, this one day of immersion could be equivalent to years of pollution.
Corporates in eminent cities have been trying to do their bit helping conserve the environment. We, at Omaxe, who have been among the leading real estate companies in India since the last 31 years, took up a unique eco-friendly initiative this Ganesh Chaturthi. We curated a Chocolate Ganesha idol of about 8 inches tall, with a thickness of around 6 inches and chose to perform our rituals with this Chocolate Ganesha idol instead of an idol made with clay. During the ritual of immersion, instead of immersing the idol in rivers or seas, we chose to immerse it in milk. After immersion, the chocolate idol melted, and the milk turned into Chocolate Milk. This Chocolate Milk was then distributed among underprivileged children across cities.
The chocolate idol was curated in three variants, namely Pure Chocolate, White Chocolate, and Marble Chocolate. These idols were distributed to our offices and properties in Delhi, Lucknow, Allahabad, New Chandigarh, Ludhiana, Greater Noida, and Faridabad.
The celebration took place in full fervour while causing no harm to the environment and instead brought a smile to the faces of poor children on a festive occasion. We took this initiative keeping in mind the rate of pollution that the environment goes through during festivals. Our eco-friendly measure did not in any way affect our spirit of festivity, but in retrospect made us value our environment even more.
This is a small step among many, for us to contribute towards our environment. It needs our attention and the time is now to act upon it before we become helpless. Over the recent years, many Indians have chosen the environment friendly lifestyle, but this is most often forgotten during festivals. We aim to reinstate this fact through our initiative and hope to inspire many to adapt such eco-friendly measures, especially during festivals.