I am happy to learn that the Department of Environment & Forests, A&N Administration is celebrating “70th Van Mahotsav” in these Islands alongwith rest of the Country & World during the month of July with active involvement of residents of these Islands.
Van Mahotsav- the festival of tree planting owes its origin to the great visionary Late K.M. Munshi, the then Union Minister for Food & Agriculture who launched the programme in 1950 with the slogan “Tree means water, water means bread and bread is life”. This festival reflects our Indian ethos of appreciation and respect for Mother Nature.
We know that tree and forests render selfless service in mitigating the ill effects of soil erosion, floods and global warming. Hence, they deserve our respect. We have an obligation towards them for their protection and conservation, because they are the very future of mankind. In Andaman & Nicobar Islands we have a commendable forest and tree cover of over 90%, but we cannot afford to be complacent about it. This is so because we are mere trustees of this irreplaceable natural wealth for future generations.
I extend my best wishes to one and all for the successful observance of the ‘70th Van Mahotsav’ celebrations.
(Admiral D K Joshi)
PVSM, AVSM, YSM, NM, VSM (Retd.)
Lt. Governor, A&N Islands
Vice-Chairman, Islands Development Agency