6 months, 1 week ago
Leonardo DiCaprio Urged By NGOs To Withdraw Support From Jaggi Vasudev's ‘Cauvery Calling’ Campaign
A group of many NGOs has urged Hollywood actor Leonardo DiCaprio to withdraw his support from Jaggi Vasudev’s ‘Cauvery Calling’ campaign, by Isha Foundation. Around 90 organizations had written a letter to the actor, on Tuesday, September 24, 2019, requesting him to sideline himself from the said campaign.
The letter came just a few days after DiCaprio had shown his support to the Isha Foundation, when he shared a link on his Facebook page, on Saturday, in which he wrote:
India’s rivers are severely endangered with many of its smaller rivers vanishing. Join Sadhguru and the Isha Foundation in their fight to preserve the Cauvery River.
Cauvery river. (Image Credit: ishaoutreach.org)
The Coalition for Environmental Justice, in the letter, said that the actor “may not have been appropriately advised” correctly regarding the issue and in supporting this campaign. It said that the 'Cauvery Calling' campaign tries to show a simplistic side to the whole river saving initiative, which, in reality, cannot be attained by merely planting trees near the river banks.
Coordinator of the Environment Support Group, Leo F Saldanha had also signed this letter on behalf of the Coalition for Environmental Justice.
When talking about ‘Cauvery Calling’ campaign itself, then it was first launched by Jaggi Vasudev earlier this year in July.
During the launch, Isha Foundation had said that this initiative will support lakhs of farmers in the Cauvery basin to plant 242 crore trees. It had also expected that it will revive the river, too, apart from benefiting the farmers.
The Coalition for Environmental Justice, however, raised questions on this campaign and especially on the ‘credibility’ of the foundation behind it. The collective, in its letter, said that the headquarters of Isha Foundation is built into an elephant corridor and also on the land which actually belongs to the Adivasis.
The letter also pointed out about a PIL which was filed against the funds being raised for ‘Cauvery Calling’ by the foundation.
“The link you have shared on your Facebook page of the Isha website reveals that the volume of money being gathered is over Rs. 10,000 crores (US$1.5 billion),” the letter to DiCaprio read.
In their conclusion, the NGOs requested him to withdraw his support from this initiative as it won’t be benefitting the river in any way. And that the support for this campaign sets a wrong precedent as well.
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