‘Swachhta Pakhwada’, Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav at AMU


Aligarh : The fortnight ‘Swachhta Pakhwada’ and ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ with intense focus on issues and practises of cleanliness and importance of tree plantations were observed with a host of activities at the Aligarh Muslim University—AMU in line with Government guidelines on appropriate Covid behaviour.

At the tree-plantation drive of the residential VM Hall of the University to observe the ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’, Vice Chancellor, Professor Tariq Mansoor stressed the need for sustainable development and mass tree-plantations.

“It is a responsibility of every individual to contribute in the noble cause. We inhale oxygen to live, and trees are the main characteristic source of oxygen. More and more trees guarantee that the supply of oxygen never ends, vegetation never comes to a standstill and the biodiversity remains maintained”, said Prof Mansoor.

Former V M Hall resident, Prof Anees Ahmad (Department of Chemistry) delineated mechanism of waste management, recycling process and the use of naturally harvested water in irrigation.

Vice Chancellor, Prof Tariq Mansoor and Dr Imtiyaz Ahmad (Department of Urdu and former VM Hall resident) donated Rs 10, 000 each for the plantation drive.

Dr Shafiullah (Department of Chemistry), Prof Zaki Anwar Siddiqui (MIC, Land and Garden), Dr Haseeb Athar, Dr Mohammad Saad Ahmad Khan, Dr Mohammad Aslam, Mr M Kamran Khan, Adil Zia and Dr Mansoor Ali Khan also spoke on how planting trees is an ideal approach for supporting nature.

Prof Zamirullah Khan (Provost, VM Hall) delivered the welcome address.

Wajahat Khan extended the vote of thanks.

The ‘Swachhta Pakhwada’ observations came to a close at the Centre of Continuing and Adult Education and Extension (CCAEE) of the university after a cogent online talk-show with the Chief Guest, renowned paediatrician, Dr Hameeda Tariq delineating the importance of ‘Swacchta Awareness’.

She exhorted the faculty members and non-teaching staff to devote time for voluntary work on cleanliness, hygiene and sanitation and to spread awareness about various diseases that are caused due to poor hygiene.

Cleanliness is an important virtue in all religions, and scriptures describe it as one of the divine qualities which we all must practice to realise the vision of a clean Bharat, said Dr Hameeda.

The ‘Swacchta’ observations, clubbed with ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahuotsav’ (75-years of Indian Independence) also included compelling speeches by Prof Mohammad Gulrez (Director, CCAEE), Prof Aysha Munira Rasheed (Deputy Director, CCAEE), Prof Naseem Ahmad Khan and Dr Jafar Abidi.

Prof Mohammad Gulrez administered the ‘Swachhta’ pledge for making cleanliness and hygiene a part of daily life and devoting 100 hours yearly towards cleanliness.

Faculty members and non-teaching staff vowed to sensitise people about the importance of cleanliness and propagate the ‘Swachh Bharat’ movement to the farthest reach of rural and urban areas.

A ‘Best out of Waste’ competition was also held in which the participants presented their ideas on how to recycle and reuse waste materials. Prof Azra Musavi (Director, Centre for Women Studies) and Dr Juhi Gupta were the judges of the competition.

At the Department of Physics, faculty members and the non-teaching staff pledged to maintain cleanliness and spread the ‘Swachh Bharat’ movement across the country.

“Supervisors and office staff were instructed to maintain cleanliness in the offices and laboratories; saplings of high CO2 absorbing plants were sowed in unused spots of the department premises; a slogan-writing competition was held on the topic ‘Discourage use of Plastic and Forest Conservation’; students also made posters on ‘Water Conservation’ and wrote essays on ‘Swachhata – the need of the hour’; students posted selfies of cleanliness drives they conducted in their neighbourhoods, awareness programmes on ‘Ensuring no Water Stagnation in Coolers, Water Tanks to avoid Breeding of Mosquitoes took place and pictures of various ‘Swachhata’ activities were uploaded on social media with the hashtag, #SwachhtaPakhwada2021”, said Prof Bhanu Prakash Singh (Chairman, Department of Physics).

Maryama Ablaga (BSc. V Semester) won the Slogan and poster making competition. Vandana Sharma (MSc. II Semester) stood second, while Mohammad Shehpar (MSc. II Semester) and Abu Hanifa (MSc. II Semester) shared the third prize.

Pankaj Varshney (BSc. V Semester) was declared the winner of essay-writing contest.

Dr Jai Prakash conducted all programme.

In other events, student participants posted selfies of cleanliness drives they had conducted in the neighbourhoods. Events for checking water wastage and water stagnation also took place.

At the City Girls High School, Dr MD Alamgir (Principal) administered the pledge in which teachers and other staff members agreed to propagate the message of ‘Swachh Bharat Mission’ in villages and towns and to take appropriate steps towards cleanliness.

The principal with school teachers later sowed saplings of high CO2 absorbing plants in the school premises. They also delivered speeches to mark the occasion.

In the online poster and slogan writing competition for students of classes II to VII, Areena (Class VII) won the first prize for her presentation on cleanliness. Nimra Khan (Class II) stood second and Bushra (Class VII) and Habiba Fatima (Class II) shared the third place. Sana Shamshad conducted the programme.

During the ‘Kitchen Waste Management and Cleanliness Maintenance Awareness’ programme conducted by Tehmina Ashraf, students of classes IX and X articulated their thoughts and ideas and presented cleanliness models.

School teachers, Sadaf, Iram Masroor, Arshi Zahra, Tanveer Sultana, Amreen Rahman and Faraz Anwar conducted awareness competitions on ‘Waste out of Waste’ and ‘Single Use Plastic’

Asifa (Class VI) stood first for presenting her ideas of utilising waste material in the ‘Waste out of Waste’ contest. Ayesha (Class V) and Subia (Class IV) finished second and third respectively.

Afifa (Class VI) was declared the winner of ‘Single Use Plastic’ event with Ayesha (Class V) and Subia (Class IV) as the respective first and second runner-ups.

In the competitions on ‘Reuse of Plastic- planting saplings in reusable bottles and jars’ and speeches on ‘Forest Conservation’ conducted by Saima Nadeem—Amber Mirza (Class VI) and Al Zoha (Class VI) were the respective winners of the ‘Reuse of Plastic’ and ‘Speech’ competitions. Faiza Shakeel (ClassVIII) finished second and Afifa (Class VIII) stood third in the ‘Reuse of Plastic’ event; while Noor Zaara (Class VIII) and Sadiqa (Class VI) secured the second and third positions respectively for their speeches.

A team comprising class X students, Iqra and Atiqa Nadeem and Rehnuma (Class IX) and Noor Zaara (Class VIII) won the quiz on ‘Water Conservation, Cleanliness and Pollution of Yamuna River’. Farzana Nazeer conducted the contest.

In the ‘Swachhta Pakhwada’ observations at the Ahmadi School for the Visually Challenged, Bharti Yadav (Class V) bagged the first prize for a speech on ‘Importance of Cleanliness in our Life’. Suhaani Naaz (Class V), Mohammad Hassan Khan (Class I) and Sulaiman Dawood (Class I) shared the second prize; Krishna Sharma (Class V), Atifa (Class V), Atifa Dawood (Class I) and Tayyaba (Class III) jointly received the third prize and Class IV students, Bhoomi Chawla and Subiya Aleem were given the special prize.

Bachchan Ali Khan (PGT Zoology and Assistant Director, Centre for Promotion of Educational and Cultural Advancement of Muslims of India) judged the speech competition.

“The special guest, Rajiv Chauhan (General Secretary of the District Taekwondo Association of Aligarh) with school teachers and non-teaching staff planted saplings of high CO2 absorbing plants in the school premises”, said Dr Naila Rashid (Principal).

She also delivered an awareness speech on the importance of ‘Swachh Bharat’ movement.

Niaz Ahmad (PFT Urdu) read the programme proceedings and S Ahtesham Akhtar (PGT English) extended the vote of thanks.

Meanwhile, in a separate programme at the Ahmadi School to mark the ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ (75 years of Indian Independence), Md Miral Alam (Class VIII) and Laiba (Class VII) won the competition on ‘Narration of Life Histories of our Freedom Fighters’. Shezan (Class VIII) and Ghulam Mohiuddin (Class IX) stood second and Class X students, Aman Chaudhri and Sagar jointly finished third. Essudin (Class X) and Mohd Suhail Saifi (Class VIII) received the consolation prizes.

Niaz Ahmad Khan (PGT Urdu) judged the competition, conducted by Dr Bushra Abbasi (PGT History). Saleem Ahmad extended the vote of thanks. The programme concluded with the National Anthem and patriotic songs by Sirajuddin Shaikh (Music Teacher).