Newsletter - November 2020

Read Coverting Letter

Dear Friends,

We would like to share a  story narrated by V.Jyothika, our student volunteer, 10th standard, Kendriya Vidyalaya, Mandapam.
There once was this criminal who had committed a crime
(Because, hey, that’s what criminals do. That’s their job!)
Anyway, he was sent to the king for his punishment.
The king told him he had a choice of two punishments.
He could be hung by a rope.
Or take what’s behind the big, dark, scary, mysterious iron door.
The criminal quickly decided on the rope.
As the noose was being slipped on him, he turned to the king and asked:
“By the way, out of curiosity, what’s behind that door?”
The king laughed and said:
“You know, it’s funny, I offer everyone the same choice, and nearly everyone picks the rope.”
“So,” said the criminal, “Tell me. What’s behind the door? I mean, obviously, I won’t tell anyone,” he said, pointing to the noose around his neck.
The king paused then answered:
“Freedom, but it seems most people are so afraid of the unknown that they immediately take the rope.”
The story offers a powerful reminder about the dangers of clinging to the familiar.
Yes, unfortunately, too many of us live our lives choosing the familiarity of our rope (aka: familiar pain, familiar struggle, and familiar patterns).
Too many of us are far too fearful about the unknown.
But if you want to live your best life, you must embrace the freedom of picking new choices for being and doing.
After all, it’s these new choices which can open the door to your ultimate happiness.
Alan Watts, said it well when he said: “Our lives are one long effort to resist the unknown.”
The result?
We’re a planet full of folks walking around with metaphysical ropes around our necks, wondering why we feel a bit emotionally and spiritually dead to the world around us.
Today decide to have the courage to push past your fears!
Make the decision to finally take off those ropes that bind you – and blind you!
Start bravely opening up those doors which lead to the unfamiliar.
Recognize: When nothing changes, then nothing changes.
Plus know: If you keep doing what you’re always doing, you’ll keep getting what you’re always getting.
Remember: Opening up doors to the unknown is the only way to ensure you’re headed towards new opportunities, freedom, growth, and greater joy. You’ll see.
We started our journey to the “unknown” seven years back when we launched the ‘Green Resilient Rameswaram Project’.  We are not sure, what will happen in future, however, we are getting enriched in the process and feeling happy in this journey.
This month’s newsletter has the following highlights:
  • Dr. Sanjay Banerji in his blog writes about Sustainable Development Goal– 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities)
  • Shri.Rangarajan, Chennai writes on Thevaram related with Rameswaram.
  • Solid waste management work by - Hand in Hand Inclusive Development Services, Chennai.
  • Dr.A.Abirami, Programme Officer of C.P.R. Environmental Educational Center writes about the herbal plant – Sharpunkha (Kolinghi)
  • Landscaping and Beautification - Palm tree plantation
  • Revival and Renovation of new Teertham (Traditional water body) – Ariya Nachiyar
  • Regular events for building Social capital and finally
  • 'Green Rameswaram newsletter’ by the students and for the students of Rameswaram.

With best wishes,

Editorial Team
Green Rameswaram Project
Mahabeer Dharmasala
Rameswaram - 623526
Ph: 04573 - 222296(office)
E-mail:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sustainable Development Goal - 11

Dr.Sanjay Banerji
Founder Director/Dean of Amrita School of Business

Dear Friends,

This month we shall discuss the 11th Sustainable Development Goal: ‘Sustainable Cities and Communities’. In this blog, we shall try to explain

  1. What it is and why is this relevant
  2. What are its indicators and targets
  3. Where do we stand in India
  4. What can we do to support the goal

Thirumurai/Thevaram songs on Rameswaram

C.Rangarajan, Chennai

Glory to Lord Siva, who is worshipped in southern region (தென்னாடுடைய சிவனே போற்றி !)

Saivite saint-poet Sri Gnanasambanda Perumaan has composed wonderful hymns on Rameswaram in lilting Tamil. This comes as part of the 3rd canto of “Thirumurai”, a compendium of devotional songs on Lord Siva.

சனிபுதன் ஞாயிறு வெள்ளிதிங் கட்பல தீயன
முனிவது செய்துகந் தானைவென் றவ்வினை மூடிட
இனியருள் நல்கிடென் றண்ணல்செய் தவிரா மேச்சுரம்
பனிமதி சூடிநின் றாடவல் லபர மேட்டியே

Solid Waste Management

Hand in Hand Inclusive Development and Services, Chennai

Health Screening

Due to COVID-19 pandemic, health screening of 144 Green Friends and field staff has been made mandatory in the MSWM project on Mondays and Thursdays every week. Team members’ body temperature, pulse and oxygen level are monitored using Infrared Thermometer and Pulse Oximeter. This practice ensures presence of healthy people in daily MSWM operations.

Herbal Garden (Muligai Vanam)

By Dr.A.Abirami
C.P.R. Environmental Education Center, Chennai

Distribution and Habitat

Tephrosia purpurea L. belongs to family Fabaceae distributed throughout the plains of India, Ceylon, Mauritius, Tropical Africa and subtropical regions. It grows ubiquitously in all soils, sandy, rocky and loamy. It is a perennial erect herb or sub shrub, up to 50 cm tall. Leaves pinnate with a single leaflet at the apex; Flowers are red or purple in leaf opposed racemes, flower 4-8.5 mm long, purplish to white. Seed rectangular to transversely ellipsoid, light to dark brown to black, sometimes mottled. Fruits are large and 2-12 cm long, very densely villous or tomentose. Roots are cylindrical, tapering, posses characteristic odour, brownish yellow in colour and has a complex bitter taste.

Landscaping and Beautification

Green Rameswaram Trust

Palm Seeds Plantation

Neithal Pasumai Friends have organized a 5000 palm seeds plantation which was planted across the island. We took part with 12 volunteers in the planting programme on November 24, 2020. Green Rameswaram team planted 500 seeds in and around Runa Vimochana Teertham and Mangala Teertham.


Revival and Renovation of Water Bodies
Ariyanaatchi Teertham

Vivekananda Kendra – Nardep

On 9th November 2020 we have restarted the Ariyanaatchi Teertham Renovation with a pooja involving the local stake holders. Shri.Joseph, Teertha Mitra was present during the ceremony. Earlier the work was stopped because of COVID 19 pandemic.

All the works are completed such as:

  1. De-silting
  2. Bund Strengthening
  3. Wall construction
  4. Inlet and outlet construction

Social Capital

Green Rameswaram Trust

Regular Yoga Classes

Regular Yoga classes are conducted in the morning for gents and evening for the ladies. On an average 30 participants in the morning and 45 in the evening attended the session. In addition, every Sunday Shri.Hegdeji conducts mediation class in the evening for about 30 participants.

Special Yoga class for Police Department

On the request of Police department Shri.Hegdeji, Yoga teacher, Green Rameswaram conducted a training programme for the police department on November 21, 2020 in Ganapathy Mahal, Rameswaram.


Green Rameswaram newsletter (Tamil)

For students….
From students ..

3rd issue – November 2020