Mumbai: Plating more trees has become the need of the hour due to depleting green cover thanks to tree felling for several infrastructure projects in the city. Central Railway has come to rescue of citizens as they have increased the green cover by plating at least 8,000 trees in various railway colonies and stations on central line this year.
Their aim is to increase the number of tress by planting more in the increasing concrete jungle. The central railways appointed a person to look after the plantation of trees and shrubs in areas by doing a recce for spotting available adequate open space. The department has also maintained a special nursery to grow medicinal, aromatic, polycystic (medicinal plants) and bonsai plants.
Balu Bhau Thorat, an Additional Divisional Engineer of Horticulture Department appointed by Central Railway in 1991 has been supervising the entire project.
Thorat has been taking care of the gardens on the central line and monitoring the work done by the labourers.
“At least 47 labourers carry out the gardening work to beautify the railway premises and gardens. There are a total 138 gardens on the central railway line. The labourers plant shrubs at the end of each railway platforms to add beauty to premises,” said Thorat.
The department of horticulture has planted at least 33 varieties of trees in these gardens. These include bougainvillea, Tecoma (a type of shrub), Caesalpinia, and Hibiscus amongst the other varieties.
Railway authorities have set a target to plant at least one lakh trees this year. Last year, the department could not meet the target of planting 2.5 lakh trees on the central line due to lack of space. “The labourers have worked round the clock for maintaining gardens at bungalows of senior central railway officials, railway quarters, Byculla hospital and Badhwar Park in Colaba,” said Thorat.
Thorat said at many places the labourers have maintained a carpet grass on the open space identified near the exit of platform number 18 at Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST).
Railway authorities frequently conduct flower show competitions to encourage the labourers to continue planting more trees. The horticulture department of central railways has won trophies in this competition. “We have won back to back trophies in the competition and this has boosted our morale to work towards this mission with zest,” said Thorat.