Mumbai (The Hindu): Environmental activists on Sturday took strong objection to the wrong manner in which trees were transplanted by the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC) after they found that over 70 per cent of them had dried up.
The members of Aarey Conservation Group (ACG) today carried out a ground reality check of the transplanted trees by the MMRC in Aarey Colony, in suburban Mumbai where car shed for the Metro 3 is coming up.
The ACG activists found that the transplantation of the trees was done in a haphazard manner and most of them had already died.
“We found that the trees have been transplanted abruptly and in an wrong manner. For instance some trees were transplanted under the shade of two big mango trees,” said Amrita Bhattacharjee, member of the ACG.
She alleged that neither these compensatory trees were planted properly nor were they maintained in a right manner and this is the reason why the saplings and other trees have dried up.
Another activist said, “A minimum distance has to be maintained between two trees while planting them, but we found that six big trees were planted at a distance of maximum 8 to 10 feet from each other which raises doubt if MMRCL really wanted these transplanted trees to survive?”
Activist Zoru Bathena said, “It is clear that they are just counting numbers and they do not care about the survival of these trees. The tree committee is visiting Aarey transplantation site for inspection in July and such apathies will be highlighted during the meeting.”
When contacted, the executive director of MMRC, R Ramanna said the process would be rectified in case of remaining tree transplantations.
He told PTI “This is closely being monitored by the Tree Authority as well as by the committee appointed by the High Court. Whatever lacuna brought to our notice would be rectified.”
“Let me all also tell that of the 1,774 trees, we have transplanted only 357 trees so far and would rectify the process of transplantation in remaining 80 per cent oftransplantation,” Ramanna said.
He, however, appealed the common man as well as the housing societies and neighbours to come forward and adopt the trees which have been transplanted from their areas to help MMRC to give better results.
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