A nine-year old school girl from Manipur has been made green ambassador of the state as a recognition her selfless love for tress.
This has come days after a video of the girl crying for two trees axed for a road-widening project gone viral on social media.
An official order from the Manipur government said on Wednesday that Elangbam Valentina Devi of Hiyanglam Makha Leikai in Kakching district had been appointed the brand ambassador for the Chief Minister’s Green Manipur Mission, The Hindu reported.
“This was in recognition of her immense love and affection for trees and for generating mass awareness on conservation of the environment for a “period of one year from the date of issuing the order,” said the order.
Valentina is a student of Class V student at Amutombi Divine Life English School in Kakching town.
She had planted the saplings of two Gulmohar (royal poinciana) trees by the side of a river five years back.
She had been tending to the saplings, which grew up into healthy trees in about four years, the report said.
On Saturday, the two trees, along with other vegetation, were axed for a project to widen a road beside the river.
Following the felling of the trees, a video of the girl crying for them surfaced on social media, which subsequently went viral.
“I saw the video of this girl crying like anything, as if someone very near to her had passed away. Her feeling for two felled trees, which we adults would probably not think much about, moved me,” the newspaper quoted Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh as saying.
CM N Biren said he had asked SP Yengkhom Victoria to meet her, console her and give her at least 20 saplings to plant at a suitable place.
“Later, I realised there could not be a better ambassador than her for the Green Manipur Mission we had launched in June. Her passion for trees at such a young age was so infectious that I took a decision to have an order issued and hand it over through government officials to her,” he said.
According to the order Valentina will be part of all such advertisements and campaigns that promote an increase in Manipur’s green cover.