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GDC Ramgarh organises students' visit, Cleanliness Drive to mark National Wetlands Day

SAMBA: The Eco Club, Yuva Tourism Club and National Service Scheme unit ‘Prabha' of Government Degree College Ramgarh today organized a ‘Visit and Cleanliness Drive to Gharana Wetlands to mark observance of National Wetlands Day 2023.'

The visit was organized under the supervision and leadership of Prof. (Dr.) Satinder Kaur, the Principal of the College.

On the occasion, she said that World Wetlands Day, celebrated annually on 2 February, aims to raise global awareness about the vital role of wetlands for people and planet. This day also marks the date of the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands on 2 February 1971, in the Iranian city of Ramsar. Nearly 90% of the world's wetlands have been degraded since the 1700s, and we are losing wetlands three times faster than forests.

Yet, wetlands are critically important ecosystems that contribute to biodiversity, climate mitigation and adaptation, freshwater availability, world economies, and more. It is urgent that we raise national and global awareness about wetlands in order to reverse their rapid loss and encourage actions to conserve and restore them. World Wetlands Day is the ideal time to increase people's understanding of these critically important ecosystems.

She explained that from bar-headed geese to egrets, thousands of migratory birds from various countries have flocked the scenic Gharana Wetland Conservation Reserve along the International Border in Jammu, thereby turning it into a paradise for bird-watchers.

Around 5,000 to 6,000 migratory birds of different species flock in the Gharana Wetland from the northern hemisphere during the winter every year. She also encouraged the students to be more sensitive towards environmental sustainability and congratulated the organizers for conducting such activities frequently.

During the visit, a cleanliness drive was also conducted in the area by the students and the NSS volunteers of the College. Conveners of the Eco Club and the Yuva Tourism Club of the college, Dr. Aditi Khajuria and Prof. Risha Kumari, respectively, told the students that Gharana Wetland is located about 35 km from Jammu and is breeding ground to the migratory bird species such as bar-headed geese, gadwalls, common teals, purple swamp hens, Indian moorhens, black-winged stilts, cormorants, egrets and green shanks flock during the winter.

It has international recognition as one of the important bird areas (IBAs) in the world, declared by the Bird Life International (UK) and the Bombay Natural History Society.

Dr. Aditi Khajuria was the Convener of the event. Other members of the organizing committee included Prof. Seema Sharma, Dr. Sandeep Kumar, Prof. Risha Kumari and Dr. Shamsher Lal, Dr. Ekta Rani, Sanjeev Thappa, Dr. Rahul Kundal and Dr. Anjali Bala.

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