First they laughed at him, Now they thank him


Rajinder Singh Jamwal, a sixty-year-old humanitarian who doesn’t like to be called old, is a figure the youth should look up to. He is an altruistic personality who has devoted the later years of his life, when the people of his age rest and enjoy life with family, for the upliftment of nature. Mr. Singh started this work in 2010. Go to Manda Park at seven in the morning and you would find Mr. Singh with Mr. Arvind Kahjuria, a friend Mr Singh made while taking up this gargantuan task.

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Back in his time, the man was Congress Party’s East Block President. After the decline of Indira Gandhi, he started resenting the party for their grabby attitude. He cut all his associations with the party and shifted to SOS Channi Rama where he helped in assembling funds from various leaders and aided the construction of School, Hostel and Dispensary.
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However, things didn’t go as planned and he had to leave. Next he went to work with the people of Rajput Community (Rajput Sabha), but his differences with the former kept on widening, he felt used, and not in the good way, as a result he left from here as well.
One day, Mr Singh came across a sign board near Manda that read “PLEASE DO NOT FEED MONKEYS”. This is when it struck his mind that something substantial needs to be done for the wildlife and the forests that they exist in. “You cannot take away the jungles from them and then not feed them,” he says.
For almost two years, Mr Singh worked and broke his back. He used to water the plants twice daily. The walkers and the visitors used to wonder who the man is and often called him Insane. It was after almost four years that the locals started appreciating his efforts and not just that they even participated in the plantation drive. For four years, everyone laughed at him. “He is Mad,” they all said. Today they are a part of his team and are greatly thankful to him.
Manda Park (40)
Rajinder Singh Jamwal
This trend started when a 70-year-old elderly started carrying 15 litre kegs for Mr Singh’s plants. Everybody just followed suit and during the peak summer days the residents and visitors carry water bottles. From children to adults to old folks, everyone carries water and this is a regular practice during summer months. In addition to water, the plants need nutrients that is provided to them.
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Educating himself and his team around the subject was one of his prime concerns. The type of plants that suit the weather conditions, the process of growing them and various other the do’s and don’ts of farming.
They had to clear the area initially, then leveled the land. Next, they made pits for water in order to collect Rain water. This practice of Water Harvesting helped raising ground water level and this further helped the plants grow.
Arvind Khajuria
Arvind Khajuria
Mr Singh and his team have planted more than 1500 trees until now. These include Lemon trees, Phalse, Guava, Gooseberry(Amla), Bamboo, Mango and many more. The area also includes swings for children and during evenings, the place is full of children, youngsters and adults enjoying themselves.
These men intend on compelling the Forest Department of the State to attend to the woodland of the state, that is being ruined with each passing day. A more lively forest place would imply healthier animals and ultimately good health for humans as well.
Manda Park (63)
They have faith in the currently serving Forest Minister, Ch Lal Singh, since he is actively working towards improving the forest land of the state.
What started as an individual practice, has now become a revolution for a part of the district. People today have distanced themselves from soil. They are averse to the sight of sand and mud.
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