Stuff I Do

Experiences and Encounters in Pune


Posted by Sanskriti on August 2, 2009

World Environment Day 2009 at Indradhanushya

Indradhanushya Centre for Citizenship and Environment Education is a facility developed by Centre for Environment Education for the Pune Municipal Corporation. Its objective is to promote action towards sustainable development in Pune, by schools, citizens and the local government. This collaboration emerged out of a proposal initiated by Smt Vandana Chavan during her tenure as corporator of the area. The vision was for a place where people interested in environment-related activities in the city could come together.

Outdoor Rock Climb features creatures from the Sahyadris

Outdoor Rock Climb features creatures from the Sahyadris

The educational material developed by CEE at Indradhanushya include permanent exhibits and panels. Themes include the history of Pune, local self government, biodiversity, waste and consumption, water, traffic, energy and climate change. Outdoor signage/ wayside exhibits provide information about the beautiful trees in the campus. Architect Shobha Bhopatkar ensured that her building design was such that no trees were cut. The outdoor play equipment includes a ‘rock face’ and a merry go round which has a tiger chasing deer.

The educational material and exhibits were developed by CEE over the last several months through discussions with the municipal departmental heads, NGOs and citizens groups, and academic institutes. The concept of a ‘citizenship and environment education activity centre’ itself evolved out of the process of discussions with various partners.

The building and the exhibits only provide a setting. It is the type of activities and programmes that will determine the extent to which the primary objective of ‘transformational learning for sustainability’ is fulfilled.

Visioning for ID

Visioning for ID

Towards this, a ‘visioning for Indradhanushya’ workshop was arranged in February 2009.

Representatives of Pune’s NGOs, some school teachers, volunteers and anand margis (for which word I thank Jagdish Godbole) together thought about what this place could do and be. Ideas included:

  • Involve children and citizens in monitoring Environmental Quality in Pune
  • Conduct activities on campus with a view to facilitating citizens action, studies and sharing off-campus, and online 
  • Policy interpretation, assessment and policy discussion including of the Environment Status Report, the annual municipal plan and budget, and policies on waste, traffic, water etc
  • Repository for ideas and projects
Ideas for working with schools

Ideas for working with schools, dissemination of information about environment and development issues of Pune, policy discussions ...


Gather and share information on Pune's environment and development issues

The institutional arrangements for the admnistration and conduct of activities at Indradhanushya are currently being worked out, and hopefully it will be open to citizens very soon.  

In Indradhanushya, CEE sees a major opportunity in furthering the discipline of Environment Education, and Learning for Sustainability. It could be an urban interpretation centre, a catalyst for citizen action, a place for interested citizens to enhance their effectiveness as learning leaders. The agency that runs Indradhanushya should have a capacity for being self-critical and reflective while developing and implementing the activities and on-going programmes.

Some inspiring examples of museums, activity centres and urban interpretation:

 Muktangan Vigyan Shodhika, IUCAA, Pune (link opens to 12 min video, new window)

Vikram A Sarabhai Community Science Centre, Ahmedabad 

The Biosphere, Montreal has a great floor game on sustainable urban transportation

The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew have wonderful guides who undergo a detailed orientation programme on visitor interaction

And I love the London Walks where too the walk guides are experts in their field

Inns of Court, led by Mr Donald Rumbelow who is the leading light of the Jack the Ripper Walk, but this day led the legal walk

Inns of Court, led by Mr Donald Rumbelow who is the leading light of the Jack the Ripper Walk, but this day led the legal walk


3 Responses to “Indradhanushya”

  1. jaya gadgil said

    Hi Sansi
    excellent idea! please keep me on the mailing list and let me know when you have programs

    • Sanskriti said

      Hi Jaya,

      Thanks, yes its a super concept. However, CEE may not be the agency running it. Hopefully we can all be involved and it would become a great facility for the city.

  2. […] code of ethics, the Pune ESR, Ecological Footprint, The Handprint Actions for Sustainability, Indradhanushya, Clean Green Mela, the need to reflect and connect, existing connections, and need for more […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: