KS Bharat bats for environmental protection
He exchanged his thoughts with the GVMC Commissioner and assured him to extend his support to the municipal corporation in its efforts to make the city plastic-free.
VISAKHAPATNAM: In the last group match of Ranji Trophy held at Ongole in 2014-15, Kona Srikar Bharat became the first wicket-keeper and only the fifth in the history of first-class cricket to score a triple ton. Born and brought up in Visakhapatnam, Bharat grew up watching youngsters in the colony playing cricket. Bharat, an avid follower of a sustainable lifestyle, is the environmental brand ambassador of Visakhapatnam.
He always wanted to contribute to a positive change in the city. Two days before he was made the Environmental Brand Ambassador, Bharat met GVMC Commissioner G Lakshmi Sha at an event and was impressed by the efforts the Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation is making for eradicating plastic from the city. The GVMC banned single-use plastic in the city from June 5 to mark World Environment Day.
He exchanged his thoughts with the GVMC Commissioner and assured him to extend his support to the municipal corporation in its efforts to make the city plastic-free. Lakshmi Sha then came up with this idea to make Bharat the Environmental Brand Ambassador for Visakhapatnam as it will help them promote awareness and inspire youngsters and everyone following his sport, cricket.
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In a conversation with TNIE, Bharat shared, “Virat Kohli strictly follows and promotes vegan lifestyle as it helps save the environment in many ways. And Rohit Sharma helps build awareness of the need to conserve endangered species such as Rhinoceros. These are a few examples in cricket you can always look up to. For me, it’s a sustainable lifestyle. So, I always wanted to do something for the city I belong to and finally got the chance to contribute in whichever capacity I can.”
Bharat said that being a brand ambassador means leading an exemplary life rather than just creating awareness. “There are a few basic things that my family and I follow. We segregate dry and wet waste, make our compost for our plants from kitchen waste and also harvest the rainwater. This will prevent water scarcity in the future at least in our houses individually. I can advise my family and friends and everyone on social media only after I achieved the change in my life that I want to see in society.”
“We are constantly being observed by a lot of people around us. Good or bad, everything spreads faster these days. Imagine carrying your copper or steel water bottle outside and being watched by others. People around you will surely notice these minute details and might change their lifestyle,” elaborated Bharat, when asked how small things make a big difference.
Bharat believes that the aim of making Visakhapatnam a plastic-free city is not a day or a month business. It has to become a continuous practice and a permanent lifestyle. Just because Vizag banned plastic doesn’t mean the people from Vizag can use plastic outside the city. Everyone has to practice honesty and stay loyal to themselves, he asserted.
Recollecting his favourite memories in cricket, Bharat said that they keep adding to this journey and every outing and encounter is special. If he had to pick a few memorable moments, he mentioned that even though he hasn’t made his debut for India yet, wicket-keeping in the absence of Wriddhiman Saha against New Zealand in Kanpur in 2021, a last-ball 6 which powered RCB to a seven-wicket win over DC in IPL 2021 and a ton against Australia.
Not to forget, the distinct record of being the first wicket-keeper to score a triple ton in the Ranji Trophy in which he scored a remarkable 308 runs off 311 balls, including 38 fours and six sixes. “The only sport I grew up playing is cricket and was fascinated with any ball flying as a football or a cricket ball,” he recalled. Later, he joined VDCA where his coach Janapareddy Krishna Rao spotted Bharat’s talent and groomed him to be the cricketer he is today. “I see good in every player.. I grew up admiring Rahul Dravid Sir, VVS sir, Sachin sir, and now Virat and Rohit. Though I admire a lot of cricketers, I get motivated by the efforts I make every day.”