A number of students of Bajali celebrated World Environment Day on June 5 in a unique way, apart from planting saplings to make the environment greener and cleaner.
Planting saplings or pledging to keep the environment green and clean are the commonest ways in which World Environment Day is celebrated across the world and had the COVID-19 pandemic situation not there, we would have also witnessed several seminars and workshops regarding the same.
However, for these students of Bajali, June 5 is not just a day to plant saplings or take a pledge. For them, the day means much more.
Apart from planting around hundred saplings on the day, these students along with an equal number of locals also paid their obeisance to the century-old banyan tree located in the Jalikhata Temple premises.
And this is not just an ordinary tree! Apart from being over 200-year-old, this is also the second-largest banyan tree in Asia.
Locals believe that this banyan tree, which spread over four bighas of land, is nearly 209-year-old and its 207th birthday was celebrated with pomp and gaiety in 2019 and locals even cut a cake weighing 60 kilograms.
Such is the popularity of this banyan tree that not just people from across the state or country, but people from various parts of the world have also visited the place just to have a glimpse of this awe-inspiring creation of Mother Nature.
In fact, various scholars from Korea and Japan have also visited and witnessed this majestic tree.
"These are tough times the world is going through due to COVID-19. We are facing an acute crisis of oxygen. Trees are important for us as not only they give us oxygen but also helps in maintaining the ecological balance. We should plant more trees," said Ananda Khataniyar, brand Ambassador of the Assam forest and environment department.
24-year-old nature lover Smita Parashar, while sharing her thoughts, said, "Today we planted over 50 trees across Pathsala town."
"During the COVID-19 pandemic, trees provide several benefits and all of those are coming more in focus now. Trees can help provide stress relief during these crazy and unusual times," further added Parashar, who has also been providing free yoga classes to over 70 covid patients to improve their immunity via online classes.