Mumbai: The one sole surviving green lung of this city, Aarey Milk Colony, was chosen by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) for using it as one of the 10 construction debris dumping sites. The BMC seemed to have a change of heart in its stance after environmentalists and a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) challenged its move in the Supreme Court on Monday. The BMC now says it does not plan to dump construction debris at Aarey Colony.
BMC switched its stand regarding the Aarey plots after Vanashakti, a NGO, on Monday, filed a petition in the SC, questioning grounds on which Aarey was chosen as a dumping site. The NGO pointed out a May 14, order of the National Green Tribunal (NGT), against the cutting of trees or dumping debris at Aarey. “The SC has upheld this order on August 6,” reads the Vanashakti plea.
In April, the BMC submitted a document to the SC naming 10 sites where construction debris could be dumped. Two of these were inside the Aarey Colony.
When inquired, the BMC officials confessed the Aarey plots were considered but rejected recently as they were under litigation.
“Aarey was among the 14 plots selected sites in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region. Aarey was among them, but we rejected them based on National Green Tribunal and SC orders. We will inform the SC about the final list of sites during the next hearing on,” said Vishwas Shankarwar, deputy municipal commissioner, solid waste management (SWM) department, BMC.