Erode: Five tonnes of plastic waste cleared in a drive

Students, STF men, Forest Department staff clear forest

ERODE: Five tonnes of plastic waste and bottles is what about 450 students collected from forests near Sathyamangalam.

The students drawn from a dozen schools and a couple of colleges were on a mission recently to clean the forest area and temples where people frequent. Assisting them were Special Task Force personnel and staff from the Sathyamangalam Division of Forest Department.

Divisional Forest Officer S.Ramasubramaniam says under instructions from Conservator P.Durairasu the Department spoke to Inspector General of Police, STF, C.Sylendra Babu and also schools in and around Sathyamangalam. The result of the discussion was the decision to rope in students to clean forests, he says.

Collective effort: School students, along with Special Task Force personnel, cleaning the forest area near Satyamangalam. - Photo: M.GOVARTHAN

Collective effort: School students, along with Special Task Force personnel, cleaning the forest area near Satyamangalam. - Photo: M.GOVARTHAN

On Saturday 450 students and 50 persons from STF and Forest Department covered Bhavani Sagar, Sathyamangalam, Thengumarada, Gejaletti, Hassanur, Arepalayam, Gunderipallam, Thalavady, Sujilkuttai and other areas.

Mr.Ramasubramaniam says the students, drawn from class six onwards, were divided in to 11 groups and put under the care and guidance of STF men and rangers, forest watchers for the day-long operation. Most of the waste the students collected was plastic, dumped in and around Bannari Amman, Karumannarayar temples and Thalavady. Rotary Club of Sathyamangalam and Bannari Amman Sugars also joined the project in that they as sponsors donated T-shirts with environmental messages to the students. At the end of the campaign the DFO says students of Little Flower Mat. School won the prize for their enthusiastic participation. They collected more waste than others. The STF and Forest Department also gave away prizes to best student in each of the 11 groups.

The waste collected has been handed over to the Sathyamangalam Municipality, which in consultation with the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board will look at ways to safely dispose or recycle it.

Mr.Ramasubramaniam assures that Forest Department will not stop with the cleaning campaign. It has also decided to set up bins at places where people frequent so as to prevent litter. Signboards will also be put, he adds.

From THE HINDU

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