Mumbai: Mangroves in the city are in a situation just like the one in which Anarkali found herself, remarked the Chief Justice of Bombay High Court on Tuesday.Chief Justice Pradeep Nandrajog further said, like Salim, activists in the city were trying hard to ensure mangroves do not die; however, government authorities, like Akbar, were adamant on killing them.
Chief Justice Pradeep Nandrajog drew the parallel between the present state of mangroves and the legendary film Mughal-E-Azam, while hearing a petition seeking to save over 1,500 mangroves in suburban Mumabi.The bench, also comprising of Justice Nitin Jamdar, was seized of a petition filed by activist Zoru Bhathena seeking to stop the destruction of mangroves by the authorities overseeing the Versova-Bandra sea link project.
CJ Nandrajog made the remark in zest, in response to Bhathena’s plea, which has been remitted to the HC by the Supreme Court. Bhathena had moved the SC to challenge the orders of another bench of the High Court, led by Justice Bhushan Gavai, which had allowed the cutting of over 1,500 mangroves in the city for construction of the sea link project.
In his plea, Bhathena claimed that the orders of Justice Gavai and the demand of the project authorities were against the permission granted by the union ministry of environment, forest and climate change, which had allowed the cutting of only 150 to 200 sq. feet of mangroves.The SC had accordingly quashed Justice Gavai’s orders and remanded the matter back to the HC to consider the issue afresh. The bench led by CJ Nandrajog is now hearing the matter.
During the course of the hearing on Tuesday, the judges ordered the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) to file its reply in the matter within two weeks.The judges also directed Bhathena to come up with some probable solution to ensure least damage to mangroves. The matter will next be taken up on August 8.