This railway department employee makes best use of discarded plastic drinking water bottles
Puri: Anyone visiting the Siddhamahavir level crossing office in this district would be forgiven for mistaking the office as a nursery.
It is quite unlikely of any passersby to pass by the level crossing office without giving it a thorough look. And if they are new to the area, they can’t help themselves visiting the office premises to have a look at the office decorated with beautifully arranged flower plants.
From a distance, one can see hundreds of plastic bottles with colourful flower and foliage plants growing from them either hanging or tied to the office grills and aesthetically placed on the office premises.
The person responsible for all of this is Kamadev Moharana, a resident of Astarang Badagola area and an employee of Railway Department. He works as a gatekeeper at Siddhamahavir level crossing.
Kamadev says he has been a nature lover since his childhood. “My family members used to say that trees planted by me grow well,” he reminisced.
On how the idea of using used plastic bottles to plant trees struck him, he said he would feel sad whenever he would see passengers throwing single used plastic drinking water bottles out of the windows.
There used to be hundreds of bottles lying scattered near the level crossing, reflecting badly on the level crossing office. “Then I started thinking about on how these bottles could be reused in the best possible way. And the idea of using them for growing flower plants struck me,” he said.
“I collected all the bottles. Cut some of them from the top end and some from the bottom end. Then I filled them with soil, cow dung and chips and finally planted flower and foliage plants in them. I used some pieces of iron wires to hang these bottles from the office grills,” he added.
There are hanging and potted plants of various varieties of flowers like hibiscus, marigold and rose. They apart, there are also croton plants.
“It has been a part of his duty to begin his day at the office by watering the plants. If our office is looking like a garden and people are praising our office saying it has set an example for others, it is only because of Kamadev who even today takes great care of it. This is why he is fondly called as ‘nature man’,” observed some fellow employees.
According to Kamadev, if the discarded materials can be reused suitably, they would have a positive impact on the environment. “As of now not many trains are running due to the coronavirus pandemic. So I am getting much free time to focus on the garden,” he added.
Kamadev has also converted his PKRIT quarter into a small garden by planting several varities of flower and fruit trees in the open space.
He also has a penchant for writing poems. He has participated in many literary seminars and poetry recitation programmes. ‘Kabi’, ‘Chhai Saha Sabu Dina’ and ‘Coffee Bagicha’ are the three books penned by him and have been published.