Lawyers from the city came together to discuss the prospects of making Chandigarh an environmentally responsible city at a People's Convention organized under the banner of Divya Jyoti Jagrati Sansthan Nature Conservation program Sanrakshan and SIOLI (Lawyers Initiative for Social Responsibility) led My Earth My Responsibility – Chandigarh Chapter at the ICSSR Complex in Panjab University on 11 March 2016. Dr. K.P. Singh, Centre for Advanced Studies in Geography, Panjab University, Chandigarh, Dr. Varinder Garg MDC (Radiology) OSD to UHM, president PGI Sec 12, Chandigarh and Ms. Reeta Kohli, Add. Advocate General, Chandigarh and pivot of SIOLI (Lawyers Initiative for Social Responsibility) were special guests present in this exclusive roundtable with lawyers.
Opening the unique ‘Case of Environment’, Sadhvi Aditi Bharti, Program Incharge of DJJS Sanrakshan and ascetic disciple of His Holiness Ashutosh Maharaj ji, founder and head of Divya Jyoti Jagrati Sansthan showcased videos unveiling the plight of communities, of forests and of animals from across the globe standing at the receiving end of the current environmental crisis. With this Sadhvi Bharti, opened the house for discussion raising the question “Who stands responsible for this plight?”, and urged the lawyers to fight this unique case for environment.
The significance of the environment as mentioned in our Constitution, the role of the state in encouraging and ensuring environment-friendly behavior, the disparity in resource availability across the world, the role of developed nations in accelerating damage to the planet and the role of punitive action were some of the points brought out. Strikingly the hour and a half discussion saw a unanimous agreement on the fact that each and every resident of the earth, stands responsible for the state of environment; ironically despite understanding this we fail to act pro- environmentally.
Citing the need of rebuilding and strengthening the human- nature relationship of mutualism for bridging this gap between information and action, Sadhvi Rajwant Bharti, ascetic disciple of His Holiness Shri Ashutosh Maharaj Ji discussed the subject of environment ethics in her enlightening speech. She impressed upon the point that “Realization of the interconnectedness with nature is the only way to permanently instill the value of sustainability in human living.”
In the end, the legal fraternity expressed their willingness to support the campaign and shoulder their individual and institutional responsibility by becoming signatories of My Earth My Responsibility People’s Convention for Shaping Environmentally Responsible Chandigarh.
The event is one in the series of stakeholder consultative meetings to be organized under the campaign in order steer Chandigarh towards being a model of an environmentally responsible society in India.