NAVI MUMBAI: A complaint has been lodged with the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) about an illegal cutting of a tree from its base at a footpath in Vashi, in order to facilitate cars to pass through and park at the site. Activists have also informed that a metal barricade at this footpath was cut for this illegal purpose.
“I was recently in Vashi sector 29 where I was shocked to notice that a big tree had been fully cut at the footpath so that a private company could easily allow cars to drive up to the pavement and park at the site. Besides this illegal tree cutting, the barricade at the footpath which was meant to stop the entry of any vehicles was also damaged so that private cars could pass through. I have therefore intimated NMMC to take strict action and also further lodge a police complaint,” said RTI activist Anarjit Chauhan.
He further stated, “I have already enquired with the civic gardens department whose officials have confirmed that no formal permission was taken from them with regards to this tree cutting. Also, the municipal engineering department must take action for the deliberate damage to public property, with the destruction of the metal barricade at the edge of the footpath. I demand that the authorities act on my complaint as soon as possible.”
When TOI contacted an official of the NMMC horticulture section, he confirmed that the complaint has been received and it is being inquired into. However, the senior gardens official, P Giri, told the activist that he is not yet aware about this issue.
Interestingly, a new tree sapling has been planted a few feet away from the hacked tree at the pavement, just days after the activist’s complaint was lodged. However, the new plant is strategically placed in such a manner that it does not hinder with the movement of cars on the footpath.
“It is rather strange that the senior gardens department is not yet aware of my plaint which deals with a big tree being chopped from its base. This was done by certain vested interests who want to drive the cars through this breached area of the footpath. If NMMC continues to dilly-dally on such a serious issue, I will be compelled to seek further legal recourse for the sake of our city’s greenery,” said Chauhan. He added that the new tree sapling should have been ideally planted at the same spot where the big tree was killed.
The NMMC executive engineer, Sanjay Patil, also assured that he is looking into the issue of the damage done to the footpath barricade in sector 29.

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