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HCL Foundation extends partnership with NMCG and INTACH to boost native biodiversity in Uttarakhand

HCL Foundation

HCL Foundation has announced the extension of its partnership with the National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) and the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) for three more years. The renewed collaboration aims to enhance the native biodiversity in Uttarakhand’s eco-sensitive regions.

Over the past five years, HCL Foundation and INTACH have planted over 13,500 saplings, including 10,000 Rudraksha saplings, and 2,250 saplings of other native species. These plantations were carried out in 30 acres of community-owned land near Sentuna village in Gopeshwar, Chamoli district, and Aati village in Almora district. Various local communities, including NSS volunteers, Mahila mangal dal members, farmers, and school children, actively participated in awareness campaigns and plantation activities.

Positive impact on the Biodiversity

This initiative has had a positive impact on the native biodiversity of the region, with a wide range of birds, animals, and other species finding a habitat in the planted areas. Local communities and field teams have regularly recorded the presence of mammals such as Barking deer and Blue sheep, birds like Laughing thrush and Grey treepie, butterflies including Common sailor and Common banded peacock, as well as spiders like the Giant wood spider.

The extended partnership seeks to build on the success of this initiative by further restoring native biodiversity and habitats in Uttarakhand. HCL Foundation plans to plant an additional 10,000 Rudraksha saplings and other native species in the region by 2026. They will also organize community awareness programs to restore degraded habitats and conserve native biodiversity.

G Asok Kumar, the Director General of NMCG, Ministry of Jal Shakti, commended HCL Foundation’s efforts in combating habitat degradation and native biodiversity loss in the Himalayan forests. He highlighted the importance of the renewed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in achieving India’s climate change targets and preserving the natural ecology for future generations.

Dr. Nidhi Pundhir, Vice President of Global CSR at HCL Foundation, stressed the need for collaborative action to restore degraded habitats with native biodiversity. She praised the government’s initiatives in this regard and stated that HCL Foundation takes a holistic approach to promote the restoration of natural ecosystems.

Aim to support a thriving Ecosystem

The foundation aims to support a thriving ecosystem while respecting the cultural and religious heritage associated with it, particularly by promoting the plantation of native species in the Ganga catchment area. Dr. Pundhir emphasized that the renewed MoU would play a crucial role in engaging local stakeholders in community-based habitat restoration.

The tripartite MoU was signed in New Delhi in the presence of distinguished dignitaries, including G Asok Kumar, Dr. Nidhi Pundhir, and Manu Bhatnagar, the Principal Director of INTACH’s Natural Heritage Division.