The Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC) has now taken illegal tree felling incidents seriously and warned that civic authority will take strict action including filingan FIR.
This comes as the civic body has seen a rise in illegal tree trimming and felling without permission.
Civic chief Abhijit Bangar has also requested to Navi Mumbai police commissioner to direct the concerned police official to register FIR in civic official approaches for the same.
“Trees maintain the balance of the environment. Therefore, it is very important to stop deforestation to prevent environmental degradation,” said a senior civic official, adding that besides planting new trees, special attention should be paid to prevent deforestation.
“Even if a tree needs to be cut down or to be pruned for an urgent reason, it requires the permission of the civic Tree Authority functioning that comes under the Municipal Commissioner,” added the official.
However, he added that it is often observed that trees are being cut down or pruned without such permission. At present, the only non-cognizance offense is being filed. “However, now, we will initiate strict action and file an FIR under Section 2 (c) and 3 of the Maharashtra Prevention of Defacement of Property Act, 1995,” said the official. He added that in this connection, civic chief Bangar has requested the Navi Mumbai Commissioner of Police to direct the concerned police officer to register F.I.R. The superintendent of the civic garden department will be responsible for filing the F.I.R.
In August, NMMC had lodged a complaint against a person who allegedly felled a tree on the basis of a fake permission letter. The man allegedly used an old letter by making some changes to fell the tree in sector 8 in Vashi on August 16. However, during verification of the letter, it was found that a similar serial number letter was issued on November 11 in 2019 for felling a tree of society at sector 19 in Nerul. And, the Garden Department had not issued any letter for the sector 8 Vashi tree.
Similarly, in October third week, in Vashi sector 29, trees were cut to facilitate parking a car. After an activist noticed and complained about the same to civic authority, the civic body lodged a complaint.