Amritsar, July 4
A noble project to ensure a natural resting places for those who have passed on has been launched as a collaborative venture between the Diocese of Amritsar, WWF volunteers and Dilbir Foundation (DF). Presently into its ambit are three graveyards of the holy city, namely European cemetery at Putligarh, Missionary cemetery, Islamabad, and the Fort cemetery, Gobindgarh. Work on the first graveyard, the European cemetery, has been launched over the weekend and shall continue till the project is completed within this plantation season.
During this start-up session, stones and pebbles, as well as garbage and plastic were cleared from around the graves of this four-acre resting place. The faithful drawn from the churches, St Pauls Church, Rialto, Christ Cathedral Church, Ram Bagh, and Chheharta Church, as well as WWF and DF volunteers cleared up the area with bagfuls of litter removed from the site.
These graveyards are a part of the city’s history as some of the graves date back to the 1800s while many of them are narratives of interest that form a part of the heritage of Amritsar, and some even shared legacies with the United Kingdom. In deference to the wishes of the Church of North India, the graveyard is being divided into four blocks and 40 rows to ensure orderly burials as also maintaining of dignity of the resting place.
Gunbir Singh, Chairman, WWF (Punjab), as well as head of DF, stated, “Ultimate resting places must have the sanctity of natural solace. In our endeavour to assist the community, our volunteers shall work shoulder to shoulder with the church to provide a pristine environment. We shall ensure native species for shade, as also have some flowering varieties in place so that the visitors can offer floral tributes.”