Saturday, March 10, 2012

THE HINDU: Neighbours on a mission

Neighbours on a mission

On a world trip, T. Srinavasa Rao and R. Gnanasekaran.

IT WAS in 1986 that neighbours T. Srinivasa Rao and R. Gnanasekaran, both electrical engineers from Pondicherry, decided that their lives would not be restricted to being just another 9-to-5 saga. Instead, they decided to devote their lives to doing something different. The idea resulted in their touring the world five times, spreading the message of environment conservation.

"During the many evenings we spent at the beach near our house, one day this idea suddenly struck us. Of course, there were problems and many people thought it not the best of ideas for two youngsters to just wander around the world.

But the more we thought about it, the more we felt we were on the right track. What initiated the trip was all this talk about nuclear disarmament at that time, which had us touring the world on a bicycle the first time round,'' says Gnanasekaran.

But their critics then have now turned admirers as they have managed to bring back "innovative projects'' to the country and also provide useful suggestions. They have also brought out a "diary'' on their travels.

Speaking about their initial trips, Srinivasa says: "We started our first world tour on a bicycle and the message we carried was `Nuclear Disarmament and World Peace'.

Our second trip, which took us to 70 countries in a Maruti Gypsy, was to propagate the message of `Save Environment Today - Or Tomorrow Will Be Too Late'. The third world tour was in a Maruti Zen in 1996 when we were gathering world support for `Saving Antarctica', and the other trips in 2000 and 2002 were about `Mission Save Earth'.''

The two neighbours are now in Delhi talking to officials in the Union Ministry of Environment and Forest about their experiences and looking at the possibility of putting their travel and experience to better use.

"Having travelled the world, we are aware of where India stands. For one, we have a population which is really large and our problems are complex and have many shades to it,'' explains the duo who have been instrumental in setting up eco clubs in schools, adding environment education to the school curriculum and imposing a ban on prawn culture.

"India has among the most badly polluted river systems in the world. The country lacks a good monitoring agency and the bane of the system, of course, is that there is no accountability and the enforcement is very weak,'' explains Srinivasa.

While their gripping travel tales are all there in their first book, `Mission Save Earth', the duo is now working on their second book. "In our book we have spoken about many incidents across the globe, the dangers and the beauty that we saw around. And through these numerous trips we have realised that nature is really the most powerful `person' in the universe, human beings are fools to believe that we can alter its course,'' says Srinivasa.

By Bindu Shajan Perappadan


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This Blogspot is meant for publishing the World Tour achievements by the Pondicherry Environmentalists Mr. T.Srinivasa Rao and Mr. R.Gnanasekaran on the aspects of the World Peace & Nuclear Disarmament, Environmental Awareness Campaign, Global Warming and Save Antarctica, Human Rights Protection, etc., so as to create an awareness to the general public. For further details and its accurateness please freely write to us at:

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