Mumbai: Tree Trimming Drive Halted For 2 days After Malabar Hill Residents Complain To Guardian Minister Deepak Kesarkar

Mumbai: Tree Trimming Drive Halted For 2 days After Malabar Hill Residents Complain To Guardian Minister Deepak Kesarkar

Tree trimming drive will be halted in the city for two days after the residents of Malabar Hill area of South Mumbai met guardian minister Deepak Kesarkar and alleged non-adherence to the guidelines of tree cutting.

Dhairya GajaraUpdated: Tuesday, May 28, 2024, 11:00 PM IST
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Mumbai: Tree Trimming Drive Halted For 2 days After Malabar Hill Residents Complain To Guardian Minister Deepak Kesarkar |

Mumbai: The tree trimming drive will be halted in the city for two days after the residents of Malabar Hill area of South Mumbai met guardian minister Deepak Kesarkar and alleged non-adherence to the guidelines of tree cutting. The minister also suggested formation of an association of citizens to ensure accountability from the contractor and proactively deal with the issue in following years.

The citizens residing around the Hanging Garden in Malabar Hill area have been complaining about improper work undertaken by the contractors for the tree trimming activity. After meeting a former union minister, the residents met Kesarkar on Tuesday to raise the issue about tree trimming with the city’s guardian minister.

The residents put forth multiple issues related to tree trimming, including removal of branches without proper equipment, indiscriminate hacking and lack of competent supervision. After hearing the pleas, the minister called up the municipal commissioner of Mumbai and shared the residents’ concerns with him.

The minister also requested the BMC commissioner to halt the tree trimming drive for two days and restart it only after a second meeting is conducted with the residents. The meeting will also be attended by BMC officials from the garden department and the forest officials, who will discuss guidelines for tree trimming.

The minister also asked the residents of Malabar Hill to communicate about the meeting with other citizen groups in the city and motivate them to take part in policy making for their respective areas. Over the next week, these citizens groups will work together with an expert and the contractor to complete trimming before monsoons whilst ensuring minimal damage to the trees. This process will also be formalised next year to deal with the issues proactively.

Khorshed Bharucha, a resident of the area who attended the meeting, told The Free Press Journal that, “The minister was very cooperative towards our complaints and called up officials in front of us to find a way to prevent similar issues from occurring again in the future. However, our primary concern is that even after having provisions in place to save the trees, why do the citizens have to beg the authorities for saving the trees. We will hopefully work for a better change.”

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