Appreciating the city’s first-ever Flamingo Festival organized by a group of environmentalists, Navi Mumbai Municipal Commissioner Abhijit Bangar has stressed that the wetlands of the area must be protected.
"The presence of a large number of Flamingos is not incidental and it denotes the importance of the huge biodiversity of the Navi Mumbai region," Bangar said speaking as the chief guest at the Flamingo Festival held by a group of environmentalists, at Delhi Public School (DPS), Nerul, on the occasion of World Migratory Bird Day.
The event was jointly organized by NatConnect Foundation, Kharghar Wetlands & Hills and Save Navi Mumbai Environment.
Bangar said, "The city has now come to be known as a Flamingo City and the festival will give it another identity. I appreciate the enthusiasm shown by school-going children in the event and the demonstration of their love for the environment through a mini-march with placards at the venue."
“It has become a fashion to talk about the environment these days,” he said and stressed the need for every individual conscious of saving nature. In this context, he said, events of this type certainly contribute to conserving our wetlands and mangroves.
Clement Ben, additional principal chief conservator of forests (wildlife)-west, said, "The Flamingo Festival will go a long way in spreading the good word about preserving the fragile ecological balance. I hope that this will become a people’s movement."
BN Kumar, director of NatConnect Foundation, said, "the response was overwhelming and people from across Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) evinced interest and visited. As many as 70 photographs shot by wildlife photographers and nature lovers depicting flamingos and biodiversity were on display."
Kumar described migratory birds as ambassadors of the environment and said the people’s involvement in conserving our wetlands must be strengthened.
Sunil Agrawal of Save Navi Mumbai Environment pointed out that the officials responsible for overseeing the environment must be made accountable.
Jyoti Nadkarni of Kharghar Wetlands and Hills said the Festival will be continued in the years to come.
DPS Principal J Mohanty stressed the need of spreading environmental awareness among children so that they will be responsible citizens of tomorrow.