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Statesman: Saplings of love bloom in Chipko land

DEHRA DUN, Feb. 14. They were once ready to die for it. Now they love for it. In the land of the first tree-huggers of the world, about 150 young men and women planted saplings to say the most revered four-letter word on Valentine’s Day today. It helped that the saplings came for free from a stall set up for the purpose outside Gandhi Park in the city.

“Till evening, about 150 saplings of Jamun and silver oak were taken by people, mostly youngsters. About 15 planted them,” said Mr Kalyan Singh Rawat, who set up the stall on 13 and 14 February. Founder of the Maiti movement, in which a bride plants a sapling at her parents’ place before leaving for her husband’s home, thereby exhorting her parents to care of it, he said: “Even young girls living in remotest areas know the significance of this day. What better way to send out the ‘save-environment’ message than through love-filled hearts?” — Swati Sharma [more]