Mumbai: Residents Protest Against Illegal Dumping Of Stones And Mud Into Mangroves Near Manori Jetty

Mumbai: Residents Protest Against Illegal Dumping Of Stones And Mud Into Mangroves Near Manori Jetty

Residents of Manori and Gorai are seeking answers from the government as truckloads of mud and boulders have been dumped into the mangrove trees near the Manori jetty during the last few weeks.

Manoj RamakrishnanUpdated: Monday, July 08, 2024, 10:53 PM IST
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Mumbai: Residents Protest Against Illegal Dumping Of Stones And Mud Into Mangroves Near Manori Jetty |

Mumbai: Residents of Manori and Gorai are seeking answers from the government as truckloads of mud and boulders have been dumped into the mangrove trees near the Manori jetty during the last few weeks.

More trucks emptied stones and mud into the Manori creek on Monday morning Residents shared pictures of boulders choking the mangrove trees in the creek. Two dumpers of stones were emptied in the mangroves early this morning at about 4 am at Manori Creek on Saturday, reported citizens' group Watchdog Foundation.

Residents of the area said they had asked workers carrying on the work to share documents that authorised them to reclaim the mangroves protected as forests. "But they have refused to share any information on the work. There is total secrecy," said Gorai resident Lourdes D'Souza of the Dharavi Beth Bachao Samiti, an association representing the area.

Dharavi is the local name for the region. "After all the complaints to the environment and forest department, letters from Watchdog foundation, and newspaper reports, the forest officers have closed their eyes."

The Mumbai Maritime Board (MMB) has said that the reclamation was being done to create an approach road to the new jetty for the RORO (Roll On-Roll Off) service planned between Manori and Marve. The RORO service will replace the ferry from Marve to Manori. MMB said they have the clearance for the reclamation from the forest department.

However, the local forest officials seem to be unaware of the work. Satish Jadhav, forest officer for Gorai-Manori, said he will need time to investigate the complaints. "The reclamation may not be happening on the mangrove forests. I will go to the area and check," said Jadhav.

MMB has said that the RORO service will replace the ferry. The ferry, which can carry two-wheelers, is popular as a road trip between Marve and Manori, located just a few hundred metres on either side of the creek, will take nearly two hours via Bhayandar. The RORO will take cars and other small vehicles across the creek, said MMB officials.

Residents had opposed an earlier proposal to build a bridge across the creek. The plan for the bridge has been abandoned because of the opposition and the lack of land to construct an approach road to the bridge. The current reclamation is for the RORO jetty.

However, residents do not want the RORO, worried that the project will bring in builders who will grab some of the last open land in the city. "The RORO will bring hundreds of vehicles to Manori. The roads in the area are narrow. Where will you park the vehicles? We have been opposing the RORO since 2015. At that time they called us for a discussion. We asked them about the parking and they had no answers," said D'Souza. "The work is now being done clandestinely."

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