HSBC India and INTACH Collaborate to Restore Iconic Indian Botanical Garden

Historic AJC Bose Garden in Howrah to be Revitalized Through a Three-Year Conservation Project

HSBC India and The Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) have announced a collaborative effort to rejuvenate the historic AJC Bose Indian Botanical Garden in Howrah. This initiative was inaugurated at a ceremony attended by senior officials from the Ministry of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change, Government of India, the Department of Environment, Government of West Bengal, HSBC India, and INTACH.

The AJC Bose Indian Botanical Garden, dating back to 1787, stands as one of Asia’s oldest botanical gardens, sprawling over 273 acres and housing around 12,000 plant species. However, challenges stemming from changing river flow patterns and sewage inflow into its interconnected lake system have led to deteriorating lake ecosystems, impacting the overall garden ecosystem.

Over a three-year engagement, HSBC India and INTACH, in collaboration with the Botanical Survey of India (BSI), will focus on various interventions to conserve the garden and enhance the visitor experience. Key aspects of the project include restoring waterbodies, developing educational programs, intensifying tree planting and mangrove protection, and boosting biodiversity. The ultimate goal is to establish the Indian Botanical Garden as a vital conservation area while promoting sustainable living and nature conservation among visitors.

Aloka Majumdar, Global Head of Philanthropy and Head of Sustainability at HSBC India, expressed their enthusiasm for the initiative, emphasizing the importance of the botanical garden in preserving West Bengal’s heritage and fostering a deeper connection between humans and the plant ecosystem. Manu Bhatnagar, Principal Director of the Natural Heritage Division at INTACH, highlighted the need to restore the gardens to their pristine state and make them more visitor-friendly, considering their significance as a repository of natural heritage.