by Hon'ble Minister for Environment and Forests
His Excellency the Vice-President of India, Thiru. Bhairon Singh Shekhawatji, Prof. Yash Pal, the Eminent Scientist of the country, Thiru. V.K. Duggal, Special Secretary, Ministry of Environment & Forests, Young Environmentalists, Ladies & Gentlemen,
It gives me great pleasure to be among you today on the occasion of the World Environment Day and the 25th Foundation Day of the National Museum of Natural History. The World Environment Day is a reminder to show our gratefulness to Mother Nature, which sustains all forms of life. This is the day to focus our thoughts and our energies to make collective efforts towards protecting the environment. It is on this historic day in 1972, the United Nation’s Conference on Human Environment began in Stockholm. This year UNEP has given a very appropriate theme for the Environment Day which is, “Water – Two billion people are dying for it”. This is an urgent appeal to each one of us to recognize the significance of “Elixir of Life” and the role each one of us can play to conserve it.
We should be proud of our country’s natural bounty and unique bio-diversity. India is amongst the rare countries where major biomes of the world are represented. India is one among the twelve countries where 60-70% of the world’s total biodiversity exists. India has two out of the 18 biodiversity hot spots in the world.
India has rich traditional knowledge and wisdom in the conservation of nature and natural resources. Religious beliefs, culture and folklore have together treated nature and environment with sanctity. Conservation and protection of environment and love for nature have always been part and parcel of Indian ethos and culture.
Independent India has traveled a long way on the path of progress and industrialization in order to achieve better quality of life. We have accelerated the process of development without considering the...