"Trees exhale for us so that we can inhale them to stay alive. Can we ever forget that? Let us love trees with every breath we take until we perish" said a well-known writer Munia Khan. Our country has so many festivals and mythological stories related to forests and trees. One of the most celebrated of them all is Van Mahotsav, a week-long celebration that is dedicated to Mother Earth in order to protect our life support system on the planet. Celebrated from July 1 through July 7, this week-long Mahotsav, aims at diverting attention towards the big issue, which undoubtedly is increasing deforestation.
Delhi, being the capital of India takes this celebration a notch higher by turning wastelands into future green zones. Every year, as a part of this campaign, many afforestation drives are conducted in the city in order to spread community awareness about the ill effects of urbanization and globalization on nature. A large number of NGOs, government authorities along with the participation of school children mark the beautiful initiative. Children write Van Mahotsav slogans, plant saplings along with their teachers, and learn the importance of co-existing with nature.
History of Van Mahotsav Day
With the onset of the monsoon, tens and thousands of saplings are planted all across India and the festival literally is the celebration and creation of new life. Van Mahotsav was started back in the year 1950 by K.M. Munshi, who, back then, was a Union Minister for Agriculture and Food.
The main aim of this Mahotsav is to create enthusiasm and awareness amongst the masses. During this festival, each and every citizen of India is expected to plant a sapling during the entire Van Mahotsav week and pass it on to the next generation.
Thankfully, the tradition and celebration continue to date and are being passed on to the next generation as well.
Major Attractions of Van Mahotsav Day
The plantation of trees is well planned and generally, native saplings are planted as they readily adapt to the local conditions and have a higher rate of growing into a full-grown tree. The saplings and the funds are arranged and supplied by the government authorities, state and civic bodies to schools, colleges, NGOs, institutions, and other welfare organizations.
While Delhi celebrates the festival with full heart, Uttar Pradesh took home the crown of planting the most saplings in the year 2020 during Van Mahotsav. All the 75 districts in the state planted more saplings than the actual target which was assigned to them. The state achieved a success rate of 114% by planting over 55 lakh trees surpassing their target of 48 lakh.
How to Reach
For those who wish to be a part of the celebrations that take place in the National capital and plant trees at the National Zoological Park, there are a number of options available to reach the capital city of India. Talking about the distance in kilometers from other metropolitan cities, Delhi is located at an approximate distance of 1,427, 2,171, 1,516, and 1,580 km from Mumbai, Bengaluru, Kolkata, and Hyderabad.
Delhi isvery well connected with every other Indian state via air routes. If one wishes to arrive by air to the capital city, they would land at the Indira Gandhi International Airport, which serves as the primary airport of the city.
Almost all the airlines like Air India, Vistara, Air Asia along with many others have great connectivity in Delhi. Once you are in the National capital, you can easily book a cab, taxi, or even take a metro from the airport to reach your desired destination.
Indian railways are one of the biggest running rail systems in the world, so it wouldn’t come to you as a surprise that Delhi has extremely decent connectivity from almost all the states in the country. The city has numerous well-known railheads like New Delhi Railway Station, Old Delhi Railway Station, Anand Vihar Terminus along with many others.
Once you deboard at the New Delhi station, you can easily locate the metro station and take a metro ride or simply book a prepaid auto or a cab and carry on your journey.
While airways and railways are making hundreds and thousands of passengers travel to the capital city every day, there are many others who choose roadways to reach the capital city of India. If you are planning your trip to Delhi and considering roadways as an option, you can easily rely on various interstate bus services. Talking about the bus terminals in Delhi, the Maharana Pratap Interstate Bus Terminus (also known as the ISBT Terminal) is one of the largest terminals handling about 1800 passenger buses on a daily basis.
Once you deboard at any of these terminals, you can easily book yourself a cab, taxi, or just take a bus or a metro to reach your destination.