COVID-19 a message for mankind to live in harmony with nature: Environmentalist Chandi Prasad Bhatt

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Auli, Nov 4 (PTI) The coronavirus pandemic carries a message for mankind to give up the culture of blind consumerism and adopt a lifestyle which is in harmony with nature, noted environmentalist Chandi Prasad Bhatt said.

The 87-year-old, widely known as the pioneer of the Chipko movement, also expressed concern over the degradation of the Himalayan ecology and called for prioritisation of its conservation.

'The whole world today is in the grip of the COVID crisis. It offers us a chance to ponder where we have gone wrong. The pandemic carries a lesson for us to shed blind consumerism and switch to a lifestyle which is in harmony with nature,' said Bhatt while launching a public awareness campaign against the pandemic here on Tuesday.

The week-long awareness campaign is an initiative of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP).

Bhatt noted with concern the imbalance in the Himalayan ecology, including receding glaciers, drying up water resources, shrinking green cover and rising incidence of landslides in the hills.

'Conservation of the Himalayan ecology should be among our priorities as it is the source of our rivers and more than half of the country's population and the largest part of South Asia are affected by it,' the Magsaysay Award recipient said.

Bhatt also lauded the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) for the social development work done by the force.

He especially mentioned the role played by ITBP personnel in providing succour to people hit by the 2013 Kedarnath floods. PTI CORR ALM DIV DIV