May 9, 2013 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
Amritsar, Punjab (May 8, 2013): Amritsar, the city of the Golden Temple, will celebrate annually its Foundation Day, the day it was established by Guru Ram Dass, the 4th Sikh Guru, in 1577. This effort will be spearheaded by Eco Amritsar, a group formed by the Washington based EcoSikh.
This year the day falls on July 6, 2013, and Eco Amritsar will join hands with the SGPC, the administration, NGO’s and citizens at large to engage with the people of this Holy City to care for its natural resources and preserve its habitat and heritage for the future. Over 100,000 pilgrims and tourists visit Amritsar and many more visit on auspicious days.
Gunbir Singh, who has been asked by EcoSikh of America to head Eco Amritsar, said, “A sustainable, clean and well thought solution is needed for the city. We are inviting all citizens to adopt the maxim of Amritsar-My City, My Pride, My Responsibility, and join in this holistic program. The endeavour seeks to synergise the strengths of like – minded organisations and people towards a proud future for the city.”
Eco Amritsar committee members, who met over the weekend to plan the strategy, included: Gunbir Singh, AIPL Col. Kuldeep Singh Sandhu, Punjab Pollution Control Board’s Kuldeep Singh, Roop Singh, a Sikh Scholar and SGPC’s secretary, Dr. Balwinder Singh from Guru Nanak Dev University, Dr. H.P.Singh of GNDU, Arvinder Singh Chamak President of All India Brick Kiln Association, Dr. Dharamvir Singh from Chief Khalsa Diwan, Dr. Gurpreetinder Singh, psychiatrist, Indu Arora of Voice of Amritsar, Dr. Amrik Singh, President of Indian Medical Association in Amritsar, and Ravneet Singh, EcoSikh Program Manager in India. Dr. Rajwant Singh from Washington will also be a part of the group. This group will engage people from all over the world to join in this drive via social media. Baba Sewa Singh of Khadur Sahib and other learned members of the Sant Samaj shall be approached to lead the plantation and sustainability drive.
The Amritsar Foundation Day celebrations will include tree plantations and greening drives, art competitions and exhibition, green marches, street folk theater (nukkad natak), sustainable health fair by the medical community, video presentations, awareness campaign and bill boards by major national and international businesses. Natural remediation to agriculture and urban green belts shall be showcased. Media as print, audio and TV-media support shall be sought, along with social media and mobile phone application for engaging citizen activism.
“We have high hopes for Amritsar Foundation Day on July 6th and we are confident that it will reinforce the love and care for this spiritual city” said Dr. Rajwant Singh, EcoSikh’s President. He added, “Time has come that we commit ourselves to this important task of preserving Amritsar’s glory for generations to come. This city has impacted country’s history in many positive ways and we are sure this will be another great way to inspire and lead the nation.”
A meeting of Eco Amritsar, held over the weekend, took stalk of the developments pertaining to Amritsar initiated by EcoSikh: Amritsar city is one of the founding members of the international Green Pilgrim Network. Kahan Singh Pannu, the District Commissioner and Dalmegh Singh, SGPC’s General Secretary had represented Amritsar in Italy at GPN’s launch.. Roop Singh, Secretary SGPC, Gunbir Singh as WWF Punjab chairman and Ravneet Singh, EcoSikh, attended the United Nations ICLEI meet of 140 Nations at Hyderabad. Now a mandate for the city has been established for Eco Amritsar that reads: To be a wholehearted catalyst in working with all stakeholders and concerned citizen groups for a progressive execution of a sustainable roadmap of Amritsar City.