Shift to ink pen drive by Kerala government gets warm welcome

Several local governing institutions including grama panchayats have positively responded to the move

Shift to ink pen drive by Kerala government gets warm welcome

Kerala government's new initiative to replace ball-point pens with ink pens is getting a warm reception from various circles including civil society groups, artists, schools and colleges. The drive is part of the Left led government's ambitious Haritha Kerala Mission (Green Kerala Mission) which encourages an environment-friendly living. The Education department has issued orders encouraging the use of fountain pens over ball-point pens which are great harm to the environment.


According to The Week, Kerala Education Minister Prof C Raveendranath described it as a move aginst use and throw culture. "Our move is not just against ball-point pens. At a deeper level, it is a fight against the use and throw culture, which corrupts our environment and our mind," he said.

“We have only exhorted the children to use ink pens instead of ball-point pens. The response is beyond our expectations,”
 told the Minister.

Many institutions, organisations and noted individuals have extended their support for the move.  Achuthsankar S. Nair, a professor at Kerala University and a leading figure behind the ink pen drive said: “It is a big movement with multidimensional impact.”

“While a ball-point pen teaches a child to throw away everything once the use is over, an ink pen makes him more careful and sensitive,”
Nair added.

Several local governing institutions including grama panchayats have positively responded to the move. “We have decided to distribute ink pens to all school children in our panchayat with the help of sponsors,” Anila M.S., president of Karakulam panchayat in Thiruvananthapuram district told
Week.


Realm of art also came in favour of the ink pen movement. Lakshmi Menon, a San Fransisco based designer has fielded an installation of plastic ball pens in the famous Kochi-Muziris Biennale. Having plans to make it permanent, the Biennale Foundation has decided to create an  'immini ballya onnu' (a bigger one), inspired by writer Vaikom Muhammad Basheer, with the 7 lakh pens collected as part of the Pen Drive.

The government is now planning to extend the drive to private schools and offices since the move was a success.