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Meet the 11-year-old Uttarakhand Girl Fighting for Climate Change Alongside Greta Thunberg

Meet the 11-year-old Uttarakhand Girl Fighting for Climate Change Alongside Greta Thunberg

The fight started back in 2013 for Ridhima, when her father, Dinesh Pandey, also an environmental activist, was one of the victims of the Uttarakhand floods, which claimed hundreds of lives and left thousands homeless.

Greta Thunberg’s fiery speech at UN Climate Action Summit in New York on Monday, September 24, will probably stay in the minds of world leaders for a long time. The 16-year-old Swedish girl asked ‘How Dare You’ to the world leaders for constant deterioration of the climate and environment.

The girl was joined by 15 other children, who have filed a landmark complaint at the UN against five countries citing rights violations by not acting on climate issues. The countries against whom the complaint was filed included Argentina, Brazil, France, Germany, and Turkey.

Among the complainants was an Indian face, 11-year-old Ridhima Pandey, who hails from Uttarakhand. The girl, who was present at the UN Climate Action Summit in New York, started her speech with a calm Namaste. She then introduced herself first in Hindi and then in English. At the summit, she said, “I am here because I want all the global leaders to do something to stop climate change. If it’s not going to be stopped, it is going to harm our futures.”

The fight started back in 2013 for Ridhima, when her father, Dinesh Pandey, also an environmental activist, was one of the victims of the Uttarakhand floods in the same year, which claimed hundreds of lives and left thousands homeless. The floods made her father transfer to Haridwar.

In an order to not see a repetition of the 2013 floods, she first filed a legal case against the Government of India in 2017, for failing to implement the environmental laws. The petition was made to the National Green Tribunal (NGT), through her legal guardian. She was nine at the time.


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