Tibetan religious leader the Dalai Lama on Saturday expressed grief over the death of renowned environmentalist Sunderlal Bahuguna and said he had made non-violence the core of his campaign to protect environment. Bahuguna, who had pioneered the Chipko movement, died of Covid-19 at the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences in Rishikesh on Friday. He was 94.
The Dalai Lama in a message on Saturday said, "I offer my condolences to his family as well as his many admirers and friends, and I will offer prayers for him. I deeply admired the way he made 'ahimsa' (non-violence) the core of his tireless campaigns to protect the environment."
"Having grown up in Garwhal in Uttarakhand, he was not only acutely aware of the need to preserve the rivers, forests and hills of the Himalayan region, but felt it was his mission to draw other people's attention to it," the Dalai Lama said.
The Tibetan religious leader said on one occasion, Bahuguna had asked him to spread the word about the importance of planting trees and caring for them. I agreed and when I visit Ladakh, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh and other places, I urge people to go out of their way to care for the environment, which has ramifications far beyond the regions where they live, he added. The Dalai Lama said the best tribute to the environmentalists will be to continue to support the movement he began to plant trees protect the earth.