World Environment Day- 2017 celebrations at JNTBGRI

JNTBGRI, being an institution with the mandate of ‘Conservation and sustainable utilisation of plant resources’, is actively engaged in organising awareness programmes related to biodiversity and conservation aspects. This year, the theme of World Environment Day, was ‘Connecting People to Nature’ which is well in line with JNTBGRI’s motto.  In this connection, a one day colloquium on ‘People and Plants: Role of Botanic Gardens’ was organised to celebrate the World Environment Day with the support of Kerala State Council for Science Technology and Environment (KSCSTE) on June 5th, 2017. The programme involved presentation of theme topic, felicitation to a traditional tribal herbal healer, planting of tree saplings, field visit and quiz programme.

            The registration desk was opened at 9.30 AM at the venue and Post Graduate students from University College, Thiruvananthapuram, Christaian College, Kattakkada and Iqbal College, Peringamala were the main participants. The programme was commenced at 10.00 am with the inaugural session. After the invocation by Ms. Lekshmi N. Menon, Research Scholar, JNTBGRI, Dr. Mathew Dan, Senior Scientist, extended a warm welcome to all the participants and distinguished guests. Dr. A. G. Pandurangan, Director, JNTBGRI delivered the presidential address and inaugurated the programme. He elaborated the genesis of environment day celebration and stressed on the need for conservation and evaluation of our biodiversity. The chief guest of the day was Sri. Appukkuttan Kaani Vaidyan, a well known tribal healer from Njaraneeli, Palode. He was the recipient of the Kerala Sate Biodiversity Board Award-2017. Dr. K. B. Rameshkumar, Scientist, JNTBGRI introduced the guest with a short presentation on his activities and the Director, JNTBGRI felicitated the guest with a citation shield. An interactive session was followed, where the guest shared his experiences and challenges with the students and scientists.

             After the tea break, the chief guest and the Director planted tree saplings at JNTBGRI campus to commemorate the Day. Theme presentation on the topic ‘People and Plants: Role of Botanic Gardens’ was delivered by the Director, which was followed by a discussion on the topic. The Director gave an elaborative picture on how JNTBGRI disseminates the wealth of knowledge on plants to the people. The participants were taken to the Garden for a field visit by Mr. Dhruvan Tandyekkal, Scientist, JNTBGRI. Exposure to the living collection of plants was a fascinating experience for the participants. After lunch, Dr. T. Shaju and Dr. Raveendran, Scientists, JNTBGRI conducted a quiz competition. Four teams of two students each representing three colleges participated in the quiz. Department of Botany, University College, Thiruvananthapuram won the first prize and Christaian College, Kattakkada team won the second prize. Third prize and consolation prize were given to Iqbal College, Peringammala. Dr. P. K. Sureshkumar, Head, Plant Genetic Resource Division has distributed the prizes. The programme was concluded with the vote of thanks offered by   Dr. P. Balakrishnan, Scientist, JNTBGRI.

Nearly 100 participants including JNTBGRI scientists, technical officers, research scholars and post graduate students and teachers from various colleges participated in the function.  Participation certificates were issued for the delegates. Tree saplings were also given to the participants. In addition, as per the guidelines of United Nations, JNTBGRI was open for the public free of charge on the Environment Day and general public and several students made use of the opportunity. The programme was an opportunity for the participants to get awareness on the rich biodiversity, especially the floristic wealth and the need for conservation and sustainable utilisation of the bio-resources for our well being. The efforts taken by JNTBGRI to impart awareness on plants and in disseminating the information on developments of science and technology in the field through such programmes were highly appreciated by the students and teachers participated in the programme. The generous support offered from KSCSTE, Govt. of Kerala for the programme is gratefully acknowledged. Thanks to all the delegates and invitees for making the programme a great success through active participation.



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