No logging, only cutting in Aarey: Metro system to Supreme Court
Supreme Court file photo. (Photo: PTI)
New Delhi: Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) told the Supreme Court on Friday that no trees have been cut in Mumbai’s Aarey Colony since October 2019.
Appearing for MMRCL, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told a bench headed by Justice U.U. Lalit that in 2019, he had submitted a report to the Supreme Court that no more trees would be cut for the Metro car shed at Aarey Colony. No trees were cut there. “There is a statement in which I said that no more trees will be cut, and after that, I have filed an affidavit today saying that I have never cut trees,” Mehta told a bench comprising Justices Aniruddha Bose. SR Bhatt
The Supreme Court was hearing a plea that authorities had resumed felling of trees in Aarey Colony. Mehta said that some bushes were removed from the ground and some branches were cut to allow vehicles to pass through the access road there.
“That trimming happened. That is what I have said in the affidavit. The tree felling work is not done,” he said. While recording the affidavit, the bench said pending further consideration, no specific interim orders were sought in view of the stand taken in the affidavit filed on behalf of the Corporation.
“Suffice it to say that no further trees were felled after the order dated October 7, 2019 as claimed by the concerned respondent and no further felling shall be done till the next date of hearing,” the bench said. The case is coming up for hearing on August 10.
In 2019, the Supreme Court voluntarily took up a petition written by a law student to the then Chief Justice of India seeking a ban on cutting down trees in Aarey Colony. After the Solicitor General said on behalf of the Maharashtra government that there will be no further cutting of trees, the Supreme Court has restrained the authorities from cutting any more trees in Aarey Colony.
Green activists and residents have protested against the cutting of trees in the colony.
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