Age has little to do when one has unwavering determination to bring about a positive change. Seven-year-old Jannat from Kashmir has been setting an example for two years with her efforts to clean the Dal Lake in Srinagar. Her story has been included in the curriculum of a school in Hyderabad.
Jannat, who is currently studying in the third standard at Linton Hall Public School in Srinagar shouldered the responsibility of contributing towards keeping the lake clean at the tender age of five. Her father Tariq Ahmed was quoted as saying, “I got a call from my friend in Hyderabad who said that my daughter’s name has been included in a school textbook. It was a proud moment for me. A video of Jannat cleaning the lake had gone viral in 2018 and even Prime Minister Narendra Modi had lauded her efforts on Twitter and also spoke about it on his radio talk show Mann ki Baat.”
Jannat’s endeavours have been narrated in a story titled ‘Jannat Ki Jannat’ in the Hindi school book ‘Medha’.
An excerpt from the story reads, “Jannat is being praised by everybody. India’s PM also praised her on broadcasting programme Mann ki Baat. You also praise her and try to be like her.”
In an old video that went viral on social media around two years back, Jannat can be heard saying, “Today, I and my father did a little bit of cleaning of the lake. We found a lot of garbage, but just me doing the cleaning of Dal Lake will not be enough. Dal Lake is one of the best things we have, we all should come forward and do our best to preserve its beauty.
The heaven on earth won't remain the same if we continue to pollute its beautiful lakes. This little girl seems to be giving the same message as she herself takes the responsibility of cleaning picturesque Dal Lake in Kashmir
Sunrise in Kashmir pic.twitter.com/qLc5Q51BIT
— Aviator Anil Chopra (@Chopsyturvey) January 21, 2018
Jannat, who has been diligently clearing garbage from the Dal Lake using fishing nets told ANI, “I was inspired by my father to clean the lake. All recognition I am getting is due to my baba.”
Her father recalls an incident which made him feel concerned about the rising pollution level in the lake. He was quoted as saying, “I was rowing a boat along with a foreigner in the interiors of the lake when he refused to dump a cigarette bud into the lake and wrapped it in a piece of paper and kept it in his pocket. That incident changed me and made me realise that everybody has to contribute to clean the lake. Jannat gets angry when she sees anybody smoking or littering around the lake.”
Jannat and her father have also started Facebook page called Mission Dal Lake where they talk and discuss about various initiatives that the government can take to clean the lake.
(Edited by Varnika Gupta)