Balwant Singh is no ordinary man. At 72, he has taken it upon himself to turn Gurgaon into a greener city. He spends 30 per cent of his pension on planting trees and taking care of the saplings. And if you happen to meet him, don’t be surprised to get a gift from him – a tulsi plant.
A retired official from the Animal Husbandry Department and a resident of Model Town, Sector 11, Singh has been able to motivate his neighbours — and quite a few others — to carry forward his green drive. So far, he has planted more than 325 plants, and more than 90 per cent of the saplings have survived — many of them have now grown into tall trees.
“I was always very fond of gardening. Even during my school years, I would get involved in such activities. Later, I just started planting saplings in parks in the colony,” he says.
The reason behind his zeal: Plants and trees add to the positive energy of a place. He himself is witness to the benefits that plants can bring to the environment. He says, “I used to be very ill even until a few years back. I then took to planting around the house. Miraculously, my health started showing signs of improvement.”
He continues, “I used to read that plants exude positive energy and the colour green is the best source of positivity, but I felt it when I tried it out myself. My health improved and I am now leading a healthier life.”
So far, he has covered residential colonies of sectors 4, 5, 9, 10 and 10A, and other MCG localities. But the determined crusader is raring to go and his journey has only begun.