Leaders Treat Environment Like Indian Gods, Do Puja And Aarti, Pay Lip Service

By Mukta Patil

Jairam Ramesh, 63, has been a member of the Rajya Sabha since 2004 and held several portfolios, including rural development and drinking water and sanitation, during the second term of the UPA regime from 2009-14. But he is best-known, and still remembered, for his stint as environment minister.

He now says it was a role he was least prepared for. Till I became the minister, I was like any other Indian liking hill stations, liking forests and wild animals, but that was that. It was not an over-riding passion for me. So in May 2009, to my shock, to my surprise, and to my dismay, I was made minister for environment, and I thought main kahaan phas gaya hoon? (where have I got stuck), because all my life I had done finance, planning, industry, commerce, power.