Parisar was formed on the 5th of June – World Environment Day – 1981 in response to deteriorating quality of urban life resulting from an overall apathy towards the environment and neglect of natural and man-made heritage of the city. It is registered as a charitable trust or NGO at Pune, Maharashtra, India and has worked in a variety of fields such as protecting urban heritage, preserving the bio-diversity of Pune. The range of its activities has included advocacy, campaigning and playing the role of a watch-dog to ensure that citizen's interests are protected. Currently, Parisar is focused on advocating for sustainable urban transport policies.

The Genesis of Parisar

Reflecting on nearly 4 decades of pioneering sustainable development in Pune

Origins and Early Influences

Before 1972, people working at non-governmental organisations (NGOs) were often referred to as ‘Jhola wale’ – individuals who volunteered their time and efforts for free, balancing this work with their mainstream jobs. Social work was a significant part of the youth experience, facilitated through entities like National Social Services (NSS) and National Cadet Corps (NCC) during their college days. 

In contrast, Parisar was founded by well-settled individuals who were financially secure and sought to make a meaningful impact in their community. Key figures included Ravi Bhagwat, an industrialist, Sujit Patwardhan, a businessman, Vidya Patwardhan, an anthropologist-cum-educator, Vijay Paranjpe, a professor of economics and Dr. Ghare, president of AFARM (based in Maharashtra), among others.