NAGAPATTINAM: In an initiative towards making locals feel more responsible towards conservation of the ecosystem in Kodiyakarai or Point Calimere, the Forest Department has formed a volunteer group, 'Wetland Mithras'. The group on Thursday undertook a mass cleaning drive and was also sensitised about the importance of ecosystem conservation.
Talking about the group, which was formed out of the 'eco-development committees' and volunteers based in and around Kodiyakarai and Kodiyakadu, District Forest Officer Yogesh Kumar Meena said, “The 'Wetland Mithras' we formed this wildlife week has done commendable voluntary work. We have sensitised them to building a strong relationship with the ecosystem in Kodiyakarai. We will continue their work as it provides a way to improve the revenue of eco-development committees as well as that from tourism.”
Undertaking a cleanliness drive on Thursday, around 50 mithras engaged themselves in clearing a stretch of the Kodiyakarai beach of plastics and other waste.
They also cleared up litter along the Vedaranyam-Kodiyakarai Road near the herbal garden. They were then taken to the mangrove forest in Muthupet and sensitised on the importance of ecosystem conservation.
T Rojaramani, a 39-year-old newly-registered ‘Wetland Mithra’, said, "We learnt how the volunteer groups in Muthupet are functioning, and took motivation from them on ecological conservation and prevention of pollution. We have taken a pledge to do it in the long run as it will also help us through tourism.”
Around 20 personnel from the Forest Department also joined the mithras and participated in the cleanliness drive and guided through the wetlands. "The Wetland Mithras have begun enthusiastically. The initiative will hopefully improve awareness on cleanliness and improve conservation of the ecosystem," said Vedaranyam forest ranger B Ayub Khan.