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LEH, 12 September 2010: His Holiness, The Gyalwang Drukpa, head of the Drukpa Lineage (proponent of Mahayana Buddhist philosophy and founder of ‘Live to Love’ humanitarian initiatives) today inaugurated a plantation drive across Ladakh as part of efforts to conserve the environment in the region. The drive dedicated to a greener XIX Commonwealth Games 2010 Delhi, was kicked off today by monks, nuns and the members of Young Drukpa Association (YDA) of Drukpa Lineage who planted 1016 trees (The number 1016 was chosen as it marks the birth year of Drukpa lineage’s Indian guru- Naropa) near the Hemis Monastery in Ladakh as a support to ’Live to Love’ initiatives.

The trees planted during the drive comprise of Poplar and Ladakh Willow, which are native to the region. This plantation drive will culminate during the XIX Commonwealth Games 2010 2010 Delhi with an attempt to create a Guinness World record.

Expressing his enthusiasm at the fulfillment of his dream of ‘Planting on the World’s Rooftop’, His Holiness the Gyalwang Drukpa said, “The harsh conditions in these hilly terrains cannot be a deterrent in our duty towards those who are suffering because of environmental hazards. This is an attempt to conserve the environment of Ladakh and an attempt to strike a green balance in the most difficult terrain in the Himalayas. I am proud to dedicate this plantation drive to a greener Games and I urge that this drive along with the people of Ladakh will spur several such initiatives and will pray for a cleaner, greener India”.

Commenting on the drive, Mr. Sachin Pilot, Hon'ble Minister of State for Communication and IT said, “This is a special occasion, as Drukpa Lineage has initiated a green campaign in the most difficult terrain in the Himalayas. I am happy that this campaign is dedicated to the sustainable development of the Leh region.”
“I sincerely hope that the efforts of the Lineage and the prayers of all our fellow countrymen across India will give strength to the people of Ladakh during these trying times” he added.

Chairman of the Organising Committee Commonwealth Games 2010 Delhi Mr. Suresh Kalmadi, MP, said, “We are committed towards establishing the first-ever Green Commonwealth Games and have set forth for a Green vision of ‘striving towards reducing the carbon footprint, ultimately setting a benchmark for all multi-disciplinary Games in the future.”

Mr. Jagmohan Bhanot, Officer on Special Duty, Delhi 2010, said, “We are leveraging the Games platform to conduct extensive plantation programmes with the objective of bio diversity enhancement. The potential sequestration of Games related emissions is one of the key focus areas for us in the Delhi 2010 Environmental Programme. We are extremely happy to be associated with the tree plantation drive initiated by His Holiness Gyalwang Drukpa in Ladakh, which will be a true lasting environmental legacy of the Games. Our efforts will also create a sustaining legacy for Delhi and the nation.”

The greening programme, envisions to create “unity in biological diversity” and to project India as a truly environmentally sensitive nation that is proactive in its efforts of sustainable development and bio-diversity enhancement.