On the occasion of 73rd Van Mahotsav Gujarat Chief Minister Shri Bhupendra Patel inaugurated ‘Cultural Forest- Vateshwar Van’ at Surendranagar. On this occasion Chief Minister said that because of the farsighted vision and planning of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Gujarat has become then growth engine of the country. The state government is constantly striving to carry forward the journey of development in a more better and faster way which was started by the Prime Minister.
Chief Minister further said that, Because of Van Mahotsav the forest area has increased in the last two decades. There were 25.10 crore trees outside forest area which has now increased to 39.57 crore trees. Thus an increase of 54% has been seen. Today there are 25 trees per hectare compared to 2003 which was only 14 trees per hectare. The spirit of “Chhod ma Ranchhod” amongst the people has become more stronger through Van Mahotsav.
In addition, the Chief Minister said that people have experienced the need for oxygen during the pandemic. It is everyone’s responsibility to protect and preserve trees which is the precious gift given to us by the nature. As part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav government has planned to establish Namo Vad Van at 75 places in the state, which was started from this very place.
The Chief Minister requested all the people present as well as to the people of Surendranagar as well as the state to plant and nurture at least one tree and also to visit Vateshwar Van and take benefit of the facilities.
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi appealed to all the people to participate in Har Ghar Tiranga Abhiyan by hoisting the tricolour at their homes, offices or workplaces in order to strengthen the national spirit and to keep the national spirit ignited.
Union Minister of State for AYUSH, Women and Child Department Dr. Mahendra Munajpara said, Medicinal saplings have been planted by AYUSH Ministry in 3.5 hectares of Vateswar Van which is spread over 5 hectares. Ayurveda is a science given by God. Sages have played an pivotal role in the preservation of herbs.
He added that some saplings have also been named after sages. Herbs have also been planted under the Namami Gange project by the Ministry of AYUSH.’Professor Ayushman’ has also been designed to perpetuate our legacy of conservation of trees and herbs and to awaken curiosity in the new generation of children.
On this occasion Minister for Forest and Environment Shri Kiritsinh Rana said that Today is such a day for which whole of the Surendranagar district should feel proud of, as the district has been gifted with the second Cultural Forest after Bhakti Van.The citizens of the district were informed to take advantage of this forest. Minister further said that, 10.35 crore saplings will be distributed throughout the state through this Van Mahotsav.
Minister of State for Forest and Environment Shri Jagdish Vishwakarma said that Ever since the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has called upon to celebrate Van Mohotsav in 2004,since than this initiative has been prolonged till date.
The Minister describing about the greatness of trees in his unique style said that, Trees are the beauty of life, trees are the basis of life, trees are the beautiful heritage of nature, let us preserve such precious trees and protect the environment.
It is worth mentioning here that, ‘Vateshwar Van’ is the 22nd cultural forest of the state and the second cultural forest of Surendranagar. Named after Lord Vadwala, this forest has been shaped by more than 73 thousand saplings in an area of 5 hectares at Dudhraj Canal site. This cultural forest has been built on the theme of Ayurveda and Yoga at a cost of over 10 crores. As many as 33 amenities have been created in this forest with the aim of introducing local culture and nature besides plants and their medicinal properties.
Vateshwar Van has been designed with the use of princely architecture, wood and natural stones to reflect various aspects of history, literature, culture of Surendranagar-Zalawad region. Themed gardens-sections like Van Ayush Colour Garden, Yoga Garden, Zen Garden, Sculpture Garden, Sense and Touch Garden, Fruit and Fun Park have been constructed throughout.
During the program Under Swarnim Jayanti Mukhyamantri Shaheri Vikas Yojana UDP-88 and Unique Identification Scheme in Surendranagar-Dudhrej-Wadhwan Municipal Area ground breaking ceremony of riverfront work at an estimated cost of Rs. 999.77 lakh which is opposite to Arts College bus stand was also done by Chief Minister.
On this occasion Wadhwan MLA Shri Dhanji Patel, Dhrangadhra MLA Shri Parsottam Sabariya, Principal Chief Conservator of Forest Shri Ramkumar, Head of the Forest Force Forest Department Shri U.D. Singh including officials were present.