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Ridhima Pandey, referred to by some as India's Greta Thunberg, is an 11-yr-old climate activist. One of the 16 young activists who filed a lawsuit in the United Nations Conventions on the Rights of the Child, Pandey is from Uttarakhand. She says her mission is to "save the future".
On the website of Children vs Climate Crisis, Pandey’s bio reads: "I want a better future. I want to save my future. I want to save our future. I want to save the future of all the children and all people of future generations".
The 11-year-old climate activist's effort began in 2013, when her father Dinesh Pandey, also an environmental activist, became the victim of Uttarakhand floods that claimed hundreds of lives and left thousands homeless. In March 2017, at the age of 9, she filed a complaint against the Indian government with the National Green Tribunal.
"My government has failed to take steps to regulated and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which are causing extreme climate conditions. This will impact both me and future generations. My country has a huge potential to reduce the use of fossil fuels, and because of the government's inaction, I approached the National Green Tribunal," Ridhima Pandey had said in 2017.
To her dismay, the NGT said climate change was already covered under the environment pact assessment and disposed of her plea.
In her petition, she said: "India is one of the most vulnerable countries to be affected by climate change" and called for immediate government action to assess industrial projects, prepare a carbon budget and create a climate recovery plan.
In an interview with PTI, Pandey had earlier said: "Our government is working on paper, less on the ground". She contended that India was one of the most vulnerable countries and was already experiencing the adverse impacts of climate change.
On the issue of Ganga cleaning, Ridhima had claimed that not much progress was visible on the ground. Vast amounts of waste, including polythene bags, garbage and industrial effluent, went into the river untreated and there was total apathy on the part of the authorities.
"We consider Ganga as our 'Maa' (mother). Yet we wash our clothes and throw waste in it. The government claims its cleaning but there is hardly any change in the condition of the river. It is still polluted. The government must take proactive measures," she had said.
Calling for a total ban on plastic, the 11-year-old who is a class topper had said the prohibition should be strictly implemented. "If we as consumers stop using plastic, companies will stop manufacturing it."


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