We always wonder about what it takes to make a difference in the world or to bring a change in the society that we live in. A scientific discovery, a technological invention, a fashion trend, an NGO, a liberal reform or a rally; these are a few things that we often think of but for Bhuvnesh, it was simply planting a seed of thought; literally!
Bhuvnesh Ojha had dreams like every other adult who wanted to pursue higher education, find a job and by 2025 leave the 9 to 5 routine for social work. Born in a small village called Piplund in Bhilwara district, Bhuvnesh witnessed the rampant problems of the village, the prominent being water shortage that resulted in arguments and no practical solution was implemented. When he was 15, his family shifted to Udaipur where his ardent desire to save the environment started to take shape when he decided to plant saplings in his colony as the first step towards a greener planet.
Bhuvnesh finally turned his dream into a reality when he bought and planted a mango sapling on 10th March 2013 and named it ‘Astitva.’ At the age of 19, he founded Pukaar- Voice of Earth, an organization that works to conserve the environment and spread greenery. During the time, he pursued B.Sc. in Botany, Geology, and Chemistry from Mohanlal Sukhadia University and started the journey with digging tools and a knowledge bank. After eight months of continuous hard work and determination, he along with his friends planted 18 saplings in the city naming them Aasha (Hope), Bhumi (earth), Bhumika (role), and Prakriti (nature) etc. and made it a regular activity.
Bhuvnesh’s journey wasn’t a bed of roses. He faced various challenges where the society rejected his idea to plant the saplings in colonies, clean public parks without the government permission and few parents refused to send their kids for help. However, Steve Jobs’ words “If you were to die tomorrow” remained his real inspiration and adhering to one’s duties towards the environment, nothing stopped Bhuvnesh. Pukaar gained popularity and after seeing his undaunted spirit for months, a number of volunteers stepped up for this noble cause, took up the responsibility and became a part of the movement. Every Sunday, the group visits a number of parks which need restoration and clean the area by removing weed or waste and plant saplings that are taken care of by the members and local residents.
Today, Pukaar- Voice of Earth has successfully dedicated 167 Sundays for the environment wherein the group has given life to 18 public parks, planted Aravali’s regional flora, medicinal and fruit plants, developed mini forests in schools and colleges and protected around 1200 well-grown plants out of 1600 planted. He has met eminent environmentalists and nature lovers who have appreciated and supported his cause including Peepal Baba and Col. Kaleem Ma who gave an insight on how to take this movement further.
Pukaar- Voice of Earth is a conscientious organization that has found its worth in newspaper columns, position in international seminars and dais in local events but Bhuvnesh feels the lack of the fervent urge in people to protect the environment that we all live in. He feels that every individual who is living with a delusional promise of eternity needs to understand the necessity to protect the nature that is being taken for granted and promote cleanliness for a sustainable future.
“Due to the high impact of television and media on the minds of people, a lot of misinformation is being passed on and the society fails to understand what our priority is. Education is required at every level to spread awareness about nature, the consequences of development on the environment and the impact of one person for a change to happen.”
Bhuvnesh Ojha with his organization Pukaar- Voice of Earth has traveled to cities across Rajasthan to raise a voice and invite people to be a part of this cause. Around 5000 people are now part of Pukaar and hopefully, this movement will become a revolution soon so that planting a tree becomes as basic a routine for all.
The organization has started several initiatives wherein anyone can buy a sapling as a gift for birthday, anniversary or any special occasion to be taken care of by the individual or the organization. Also, diving into the field of organic farming, the team has adopted this technique and is spreading knowledge about the same to the citizens of Udaipur.
A campaign by the name of ‘Hari Tokri‘ has been implemented recently, in which the team visits homes and helps the families plant saplings in their premises. This campaign is assisting Pukaar in collecting finances for the other projects for which they had to previously spend from their own pockets. Bhuvnesh was recently presented with the ‘Swachh Rajasthan Award-2016’ by the government of Rajasthan.
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Find the work of Pukaar- Voice of Earth Here