Ghaziabad: Sixty-year-old Raj Sharma is inspiring people to protect the environment. She has helped develop almost 40 parks in Ghaziabad and planted close to 4 lakh trees over the last 46 years.
'Mau', a monkey, pays Raj a daily visit for his breakfast and lunch. She is also surrounded by squirrels and birds. Trees planted outside Raj Sharma's house attract the birds and squirrels. "These plants are my children. I nurture them as my kids," Sharma says.
A resident of Ghaziabad, Raj has contributed to the development of 40 parks in the city. Each park has vermicompost pits to prepare the manure. And informed locals don't dump vegetable peels in the dustbin - instead they drop them off in these pits. "We throw vegetable peels in these vermicompost pits. We also contribute in maintenance of the park in our locality," said a resident.
Raj Sharma sets aside Rs 20 everyday to generate funds for her plantation drive. Thank You notes from schools, colleges, madarsas, municipal authorities and even defence forces testify the good work that she is doing.
Soon Sharma aims to plant 10 lakh trees. "My will papers say that my children can inherit my property only after they fulfill my dream of planting 10 lakh trees," she said.
These trees are a legacy which the 60-yr-old green warrior will be leaving behind. Raj Sharma will be remembered by future generations, for her endeavour to make urban concrete jungles, a greener place to live in.