The Indian Battalion was adjudged first for a project seeking to increase awareness and decrease waste generation in their positions and areas of responsibility using various innovative methods.
UNIFIL Environment Award was presented by UNIFIL Head of Mission and Force Commander Major General Stefano Del Col to Indian Battalion earlier this week (Image source: UNIFIL Mission website)
The Indian Battalion in Lebanon (INDBATT) has won the first prize in a UNIFIL (UN Interim Force in Lebanon)’s project aimed at increasing awareness and decrease waste generation in their positions and areas of responsibility using various innovative methods. The award was presented to the Indian Battalion by UNIFIL Head of Mission and Force Commander Major General Stefano Del Col earlier this week. UNIFIL this week handed out annual environmental awards to seven Mission entities for initiating and implementing innovative projects to preserve environment.
UNIFIL’s Indian Battalion (INDBATT) was adjudged first for a project seeking to increase awareness and decrease waste generation by planting seedlings in their positions and areas of responsibility, preventing littering, reusing plastic bottles, building green houses and building compost pits.
The Mission’s Sector West Headquarters and Irish-Polish Battalion (IRISHPOLBATT) shared the second-placed award. The Sector West Infrastructure Management Centre (IMC) project aimed at turning food waste into compost and donating to the host communities. The IMC mechanical organic composting machine has the capacity to produce 20 tons of compost every day. IRISHPOLBATT project supported host communities by reducing environmental hazards within their area of responsibility.
Other UNIFIL units receiving awards and recognitions were French-led Force Commander’s Reserve, Indonesian Battalion, Republic of Korea Battalion and Italian Battalion.
UNIFIL had launched “Annual Environment Awards” on 4 December 2019 in recognition of environmental achievements within the Mission’s area of operations. The awards commend individuals, UN positions, branches, contingents, sections, units that have demonstrated leadership, innovation or exceptional activities in protecting or enhancing the state of environment.
Indian Battalion in Lebanon
Indian peace-keeper Sergeant Ramesh Singh, part of INDBATT, made the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty while serving in the UN mission in Lebanon.
UNIFIL’s force consists of a total 10,556 peace-keepers from 43 troop-contributing countries. India is the fourth largest contributor of uniformed personnel to the UN peacekeeping. It currently contributes more than 6,400 military and police personnel to the UN peace operations in Abyei, Cyprus, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti, Lebanon, the Middle East, South Sudan and the Western Sahara. So far, about 168 Indian troops have made the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty under the UN Flag.
Indian peace-keepers continue to garner appreciation for their exemplary service and going beyond their call of duty to extend critical humanitarian assistance. In 2019, as Indian peace-keeper Sergeant Ramesh Singh, made the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty while serving in the UN mission in Lebanon. He was honoured for his dedication and commitment.
Sergeant Ramesh Singh was deployed with the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL). According to UNMISS website, Tinaikar “drove his own vehicle on a full-day patrol to verify the security situation along the Juba-Nimule road“. It said the UNMISS Force Commander wanted to get a first-hand assessment of the security situation in the area before taking decisions on increasing troops and patrols to help deter violence.
“UNIFIL paid the ultimate tribute to Sergeant Ramesh Singh of India who recently lost his life while Serving for peace in Lebanon,” the mission had tweeted last year. Singh was awarded the medal by UNIFIL Force Commander Stefano Del Col and the Lebanese Army “in recognition for his dedication and commitment”, the mission said.
In May this year, UN chief Antonio Guterres honoured peacekeepers Major Suman Gawani from India and Commander Carla Monteiro de Castro Araujo from Brazil with the prestigious 2019 UN Military Gender Advocate of the Year Award, saying their “inspiring work” promotes equality in the forces.
Secretary General Guterres bestowed the award to Gawani and Araujo in a virtual ceremony, commemorating the International Day of Peacekeepers.