Delivering Big B's eco message to the South Pole
Meet Satish Sikha, the designer who has forsaken his fashion store to pursue environmental issues.
Toronto-based designer Satish Sikha has collected 1,162 messages -- each on a one yard-long fabric -- from celebrities and scholars around the world, all talking about protecting the environment.
The celebrities include Indian actors Amitabh Bachchan and Sushmita Sen, cricketer Kapil Dev, United Arab Emirates Environment and Water Minister Mohammed Saeed Al Kindi, sheikhs and rulers from Gulf countries, scientists and professors, and European political leaders, among others.
Sikha, 39, has sewn these pieces together, forming a 1 kilometre-long fabric that he is taking from the North Pole to the South Pole.
"I have been working on this project for over two years," he told India Abroad before his trip.
He sold his fashion store 'Sikha and Soufa' two-and-a-half-years ago and used the money to fund this project. "I have no sponsorship," he said. "I have no government money or money from any foundation. I am putting my own money in this project because Mother Earth is too precious for our survival."
Image: Designer Satish Sikha
'If you are 40 years old, you should have a 40-year-old tree'
"This project is to create awareness about how important the environment is for our children," Sikha stresses. "I am going around and talking about action against global warming...Antarctica is melting...It is not that we should live in a desert and expect forest air, but it is important for us to have trees around us...Plant as many trees as possible and make sure they grow. My target is that one person should plant one tree. So, if you are 40 years old, you should have a 40-year-old tree. That's my focus."
Sikha will arrive at the North Pole via Ottawa, Iqaluit in the Nunavut province, Nanisivik and Resolute Bay -- Canada's northernmost territory.
The fabric will travel through schools in major cities across many countries. "After the final presentation in Antarctica, the fabrics will come apart and be framed as individual 36 x 4.4 inch pieces and be gifted to children...to create awareness (among them about) how important it is to keep Mother Earth clean and green," the designer has said.
Image: Amitabh Bachchan writes his eco-friendly message on a yard of fabric for Sikha