By Zaidul Haque, TwoCircles.net
For Kutubuddin Khan, a 45-year-old engineer, the world begins and ends with trees.
We are not exaggerating: Khan, who belongs to a village called Murarai of district Birbhum, has been given the nickname of ‘Gach Pagol’ (Tree lover) and rightly so. He has devoted his entire life to the cause of making this world a greener place: as part of his efforts to stop global warming, he dreams of planting a tree in all the villages of India.
And he is on his way to achieve that target.
Khan’s love for greenery has seen plant trees: from Pokhran in Rajasthan to Buxar in Bihar, from Jamnagar in Gujrat to Etawah in Uttar Pradesh. His passion, which started from his village, has now spread throughout the district of Birbhum. The villages of Dakhalbati, Barshal, Ballabhpur Danga and Sarkardanga are now seen as a green zone. He has a seed farm in Sarkardanga, where he nurtures all kinds of saplings.
Kutubuddin, who has so far planted more than 30,000 trees, told Twocircles.net,” I wish to plant more than 35,000 trees in 2016. I am also trying to approach every Gram Panchayet of West Bengal to encourage tree plantations, and have already covered 500 villages.
Khan’s love for trees started at a young age while growing up in his village. He ensures that he grafts these plants in the village, free of cost.
Khan, who is a civil engineer by profession, is the youngest in his family and after the death of his father Raushan Khan he decided to settle in his village with his mother Laila Khatun.
For Khan, the Banyan tree holds special importance. If taken care properly, a Banyan tree can survive for more than 500 years. “Banian Tree does a lot of work in controlling the level of Carbon Monoxide and Nitrogen,” he says.
Khan also believes that it is also equally important to ensure that he passes the skill of growing trees for plantation to others too: so, he ensures that he assists as many people as possible in planting trees like him. Khan is happy to mention that his work has been lauded and people from local villages have come up to help him in their own ways: “Some people donated land to help me grow trees for plantation, while others help me take good care of these plants,” he says with a smile.