Trees choked to death: NGO files affidavit in NGT

by chitrkunwar

GURGAON: Despite the National Green Tribunal (NGT) order to remove concrete around trunks of trees in the city, district authorities have done little work on the ground, claims city-based NGO Haryali Welfare Society.

The NGO will file an affidavit on Friday in the NGT, claiming a mere 5% of the work of de-concretisation has been carried out so far, flouting its orders. The work was supposed to have been completed before the next hearing of the petition, scheduled for July 7. A NGT bench headed by chairperson Justice Swatanter Kumar had ordered district agencies to remove concrete around the bases of trees up to a 1.25m radius, and submit an action taken report in the next hearing.

“We inspected areas across the city and discovered that most de-concretisation work within sectors and in interiors of colonies has been left untouched. Whatever work they have carried out is only symbolic,” said Vivek Kamboj, founder of Haryali Welfare Society.

He further said that when the work has not been finished in prime locations such as Civil Lines, outside offices of the forest department, HUDA, police commissioner and the deputy commissioner’s residence, one can imagine the fate of trees in other areas.

A senior forest department official said, “We are not involved with the de-concretisation work. It is the job of agencies such as HUDA and MCG.” When TOI called up a senior HUDA official, he said, “The matter is in court. How can we share details of the affidavit before the hearing?”

The complainant had earlier submitted that there are 15,000 trees in HUDA and MCG areas that call for immediate de-concretisation, apart from many more in private colonies that need more breathing space.

Vimal Chander Joshi, TNN | Jul 3, 2015, 05.12AM IST

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