As the public outcry against the proposed highway cutting through the Aravali Biodiversity Park in Gurugram, grows, people, corporations and now one of the most reputed schools of Gurugram – The Sri Ram School – join the campaign save the park.
“Over the years, The Shri Ram schools have always stood for the environment-we were among the first to embrace rainwater harvesting and re-cycling. Let us once again show that ‘green’ spirit by signing a petition that asks the government to declare the Aravali Biodiversity Park (ABDP) a ‘sacred forest’The outcry against the proposed highway, which will cut through the Aravali Biodiversity Park in Gurugram, is growing with people, corporations and now one of the most reputed schools of Gurugram – The Sri Ram School – speaking against it. that will remain forever inviolate and pristine. The petition can be accessed at: https://bit.ly/2zafLfk,” the director of The Sri Ram Schools, Manika Sharma, said in a statement.
The six-lane highway proposed by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) that will cut through the Park and destroy a wonderful habitat teeming with native flora and fauna.
“Now more than ever, we need to come together to save the Aravali Biodiversity Park which is one of last remaining “Aravali Ecosystem Corridors” on the erstwhile Ridge area of the National Capital Region. Let’s come together to fight to save Gurugram ‘s precious green lung and one of the jewels of conservation in the NCR region,” the statement said.
The park was originally a stone quarry, spanning 380 acres. It is located near the Delhi-Gurugram border. After the quarrying was declared illegal in the Aravali Region by the Supreme Court of India, the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram, in collaboration with an NGO, “IAMGURGAON”, facilitated the planting of more than one lakh plants and trees with the help of 15,000 students, 20,000 private individuals and over 70 corporates.
Today, this forest has over 400 native Aravali plant species, all introduced under appropriate ecological considerations of nativity. It attracts more than 180 bird species and is home to native animal species like the nilgai, civet cat, jungle cat, jackal, mongoose and hare, making it a biodiversity hotspot in this region. In highly polluted Gurugram which suffers from very poor air quality, this is a massive carbon sink & microclimate stabilizer.
In times of severe water crisis in Gurugram, with the groundwater depleting at 5m per year as the city pumps out 300% more groundwater than it recharges, the park serves to recharge over 320 million (32 crores) liters of water annually.
The government must look at ways to save the urban forest and decongest the city side-by-side.
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