Plastic Free Pana Yatra 2024

At the edge of Chilika Lake, a transformative initiative known as the ‘Plastic Free Pana Yatra’ was set in motion. This initiative, spearheaded by Humara Bachpan Trust during the festive period of ‘Pana Sankranti&’ stated on 13 th April 2024, aimed to address the growing concern over plastic waste spoiling the lake’s environment.


Day 1: The journey began with great enthusiasm as over 100 GPLF members of Gomundia came together. They were the Eco Changemakers, tasked with the mission to clean up the area and segregate the waste. The women worked tirelessly, managing to collect 125 kilograms of plastic debris, setting a strong precedent for the days to follow.

Day 2: As the campaign entered its second day, 60 women members of Badajhada GPLF joined the ranks. Their combined efforts doubled the previous day’s achievements, resulting in the collection of nearly 300 kilograms of plastic waste. The shores of Chilika, usually left littered after festivities, began to look noticeably cleaner.

Day 3: The third day saw an impressive turnout with combined efforts of 80 GPLF members of Badajhada, Titipa, and Gomundia Panchayats. Together, they continued the cleaning frenzy, and by the end of the day, they had removed over 400 kilograms of plastic. Their dedication was making a visible difference in the cleanliness of the lake’s surroundings.

Final Day: The final day of the Plastic Free Pana Yatra brought an unwavering spirit of determination among the volunteers. Eighty women worked together and collected 420 kilograms of plastic, culminating in a total far surpassing what had been gathered on any single day. The campaign wrapped up with a grand ceremony where the Pana Yatra committee recognized and thanked HBT team and GPLF members for their significant contributions to protecting the lake.


While the official campaign ended, the next task was to manage the accumulated waste for

proper disposal. With support of Chilika Forest Wildlife Division, nearly 3 tons of plastic wastes were sent to Bindhyabasini Polymers, MCC at Delanga Puri for recycling to effectively tackling environmental challenges.

The local community, inspired by the success of the event, continued to promote and engage in activities that support the lake’s conservation. The Eco Changemakers proved that concerted community efforts can lead to substantial environmental improvements. Looking ahead to the next year, there is a renewed sense of hope and commitment to keep Chilika Lake clean and healthy, motivating even more people to join in these vital conservation efforts.