HUBBALLI: At a time when KiKi Challenge is catching up with youths and has also invited the ire of , a group of green enthusiasts in Hubballi and Davanagere celebrated Friendship Day on Sunday by taking up the ‘Tree-Tree Challenge,’ to create awareness among people on the importance of planting saplings and preserving the environment.
Speaking to TOI, Lingaraj Niduvani, project officer, Centre for Environment Education (), told that the campaign was launched five days ago to involve the youth in environmental activities. “We have appealed to the public through the social media to take up challenge of planting of a sapling and posting a selfie. It has gone viral and many have supported us and assured us of accepting the challenge. FriendTreeShip was another hashtag for this campaign,” he said.

After their online initiative, organisers claim that about 5,000 saplings have been planted so far by youths barring geographical barriers. Of them, about 200 saplings have been planted in Hubballi-Dharwad and surrounding villages including Sherewad, Betadur, Adargunchi and Noolvi.

As part of the campaign, netizens will plant a sapling and name it after their friends and near and dear ones. They take care of the sapling as a respect towards the person in whose name it has been planted.

Manjunath Barager, an artist in Dharwad, said that a group of 10 youths participated in the initiative by planting saplings at Kalyan Nagar garden. “The is a very good concept. It has deeper intention of rescuing the universe from environmental hazards,” he said.

Manojkumar H S, a techie and vice-president of Kanasu Youth Club in Davanagere, said that the challenge has reached many like-minder persons living in other states and countries. “We got response from netizens living in Punjab, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi and countries like Canada, Australia and The Netherlands,” he said.

Asha Arjun, another environment enthusiast, stated that about 200 people have accepted the challenge in Davanagere.

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