Thursday, June 12, 2008

Save Ganga - Bhagirathi Campaign

Save Ganga - Bhagirathi Campaign

We are writing to you about the momentous decision of Dr. G. D.Agrawal, India's pre-eminent environmental Scientist and a legendary Professor at IIT Kanpur, to go on 'fast-unto-death' for the conservation of River Ganga-Bhagirathi above Uttarkashi, threatened by the large number of proposed hydroelectric projects.

In the paper (available at, "A Critique of Loharinag-Pala, Pala-Maneri and other Hydroelectric Projects on R.Bhagirathi," Dr. Agrawal articulates his reasons for choosing this path. He points out the ample scientific data questioning the net economic, ecological and human value of these projects. He also makes it clear that at the core of his resolve is a profound belief that these projects would essentially destroy the Ganga, the very symbol of our civilization that continues to be revered by millions and is vital to our culture.

By offering his life, Dr. Agrawal has challenged us to critically examine not only the threat to Ganga, but also the present mode of development that threatens all our natural resources and promises nothing more than the skewed economic growth that enriches a few at the expense of the vast majority. We need to initiate a broad based debate to choose the path of development that draws upon our own experiences and is rooted in the genius of our civilization.

Dr. Agrawal will begin the fast from June 13th to bring a halt to the projects that will choke the
Ganga-Bhagirathi River. We are deeply touched by his firm resolve. He has depth and conviction and we believe he will carry through his resolve.

We request that you join us in urging the policy makers to immediately engage with Dr. Agrawal and others to address the concerns raised. The matter is urgent. We need both to protect the Ganga -
Bhagirathi and save the life of this great man, a rare combination of Scientist and Rishi.

Please take a moment to sign the petition in support of Dr. Agrawal and our life-giving river to the Honorable Prime Minister of India by going online to:

Please forward this mail to as many people as possible. We need many more thousands to sign the petition before we present it to the Prime Minister and others.

We look forward to your valuable support. We also seek your suggestion for making this campaign more effective in support of this worthwhile cause. The very future of our civilization may be at stake.

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