Green Protocol helps turn Pongala Festival cleaner, safer

Responding to the call to shun single-use plastic and other pollutants, devotees opted for steel plates and glasses, significantly reducing the festival’s environmental impact this time around.

| Updated: 26 February, 2024 12:39 pm IST
Green Protocol helps turn Pongala festival clean and safe

THIRUVANANTHPURAM: With the Pongala Festival at the Attukal Bhagavathy temple now concluded, the efforts of Suchitwa Mission and the city corporation in implementing a ‘green protocol’ have garnered praise for ensuring a clean and safe environment during the event. Thousands of women devotees and organizers wholeheartedly adhered to the guidelines, contributing to the success of the initiative.

Responding to the call to shun single-use plastic and other pollutants, devotees opted for steel plates and glasses, significantly reducing the festival’s environmental impact this time around

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The extensive campaign led by the green army volunteers of Thiruvananthapuram Corporation and resource persons from Suchitwa Mission, supported by the temple trust, ahead of the festival, resonated well with devotees and organizers alike. The theme “Green Pongala, Safe Pongala” struck a chord, resulting in widespread compliance.

Where isolated incidents of pollutant use were observed, enforcement squads and resource persons promptly intervened, ensuring corrective action. The formulation of the green protocol and action plan was the result of collaborative efforts through meetings involving the Local Self Governments Minister Shri M B Rajesh, the District Collectorate, and the Thiruvananthapuram Corporation, starting from February 10.

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A social media campaign accompanied by posters effectively disseminated the central theme and guidelines to food distribution organizers, shop owners, and volunteer groups. A joint initiative dubbed ‘Plastic-free Pongala’ in collaboration with the District Collectorate and Information Bureau, supplemented by training sessions for the ‘Green Army,’ further reinforced the commitment to environmental sustainability.

Focused awareness sessions for shop owners ensured their alignment with the protocol, while the deployment of Resource Persons by Suchitwa Mission across various locations in the city provided additional support to the Green Army during the festival. Executive Director of Suchitwa Mission, Shri UV Jose, extended his commendation to the green army volunteers, resource persons, and the temple trust for their unwavering dedication and cooperation, which played a pivotal role in the successful implementation of the green protocol.

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