World Wetlands Day in India


Hussain Sagar Lake

World Wetlands Day celebrations
2nd February 2007


World Wetlands Day was celebrated by the Andhra Pradesh State Office of WWF in association with Hyderabad Urban Development Authority at Hussain Sagar Lake, Hyderabad on the morning of 2nd February.

230 students from 10 Nature Clubs took part in this event. The day began at sunrise, where students donned the World Wetlands Day t-shirts and caps in the Sanjivaiah Park and proceeded on a nature trail. Batches of 25 students each were guided by WWF staff and volunteers on this nature trail within the park where they observed not only different aquatic and woodland birds, plants, but also learnt about succession, migration in birds, insects and various plants, but also water pollution, and the methodology for lake restoration.

After a brief break for refreshments, the children re-grouped for a painting and essay-writing competition. The topics for the painting competition were "Hussain Sagar in the Future" for junior students (Std V to VII) and "Wetlands for Tomorrow" for senior students (Std VIII and IX). Seventy four students participated in this competition. D. Sai Praneeth, Std V, St. Pauls High School; Neha Mariam, Std V, Nasr School for Girls, Banjara Hills and Yaseen Fatima, Std V, Nasr School for Girls won the first, second and third places in the painting competition for juniors. J. Chandrika, Std. V, Nasr School for Girls, Banjara Hills got a consolation prize. Among the seniors, K. Praviya, Std IX, St. Paul's Huigh School; Heena Begum, Std VIII, Scholars Model High School; R. Siva Ram Sisir, Std X, St. Paul's High School and Mohd. Hadeedullah Khan, Std VIII, Nasr School, Gachibowli won the first, second, third and consolation prizes for paintings respectively. Thirty students participated in the essay-writing competition where they explored facets of the importance of conserving Hussain Sagar. The best essay was written by Mustafa Hashmi, Std IX, Little Flower High School. A. Jyotishree, Std IX, Oxford Grammar High School; T. Manaswini, Std VII, Oxford Grammar High School and Kishwa Samun, Std V, Nasr School for Girls, Banjara Hills earned the second, third and consolation prizes for essay-writing respectively.

The children's programme was followed by an official function commemorating World Wetlands Day. Mr. Naga Babu, eminent actor of Telugu cinema was the chief guest on this occasion. Mr. D. Sudhir Reddy, Chairman, HUDA and Mr. Jayesh Ranjan, I.A.S.,Vice-Chairman, HUDA, Mr. Anil Kumar V. Epur, Chairman WWF-APSO, Mr. Lovekesh Wadhwa, Director-Finance, WWF Secretariat, Mr. Wilson Desouza, Director-Marketing, WWF and Ms. Farida Tampal, State Director, APSO were guests of honour for this programme. The event was also attended by Mr. J. Murali, Regional Consultant, WWF. Representatives from other NGOs including National Green Corps, C.P.R.E.E.C., CEE, S.A.V.E. and Butterfly Conservation Society were also present on the occasion.

On this day, Chairman, HUDA and Chairman, WWF exchanged a memorandum of understanding which marked the beginning of WWF's biodiversity study of Hussain Sagar Lake on behalf of HUDA. The results of this study will give inputs for eco-restoration of Hussain Sagar, a 445 year old man-made lake created during the Quli Qutb Shah regime, to its previous glory.

The programme culminated with a pledge to protect wetlands taken by all guests, officers and students present on the occasion. The Chief Guest guided the pledge taking ceremony.

Nasr School girls sing the habitat song

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