Tree activists irked by half-hearted work by PMC on replanting trees

Neha Basudkar
Wednesday, 2 January 2019

Dharmaraj Patil said, “The road construction in the sanctuary will have a serious impact on the habitat of the bird park."

PUNE: Environmental activists are irked with the half-hearted work done by the Pune Municipal Corporation’s (PMC) Tree Authority while replanting trees in Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary. 

In September, the PMC hacked down 167 trees of the sanctuary to construct the Shivane Kharadi Road aiming to decongest the traffic on Nagar Road and Karve Road. The PMC has replanted the trees but they have trimmed all the green branches, leaving only the stem and bark. 

Dharmaraj Patil, ornithologist and environmental activist said, “The road construction in the sanctuary will have a serious impact on the habitat of the bird park. The civic body has kept the assurance of replanting but they have trimmed the branches of the trees leaving them with a stem and bark only. There is a specific way to replant the tree as it has to be uplifted entirely with its base without trimming the trunks of the trees. But now only the skeleton of the tree has been replanted on the site and there are very less chances that the trees would survive,” Patil added.

They are planning to meet the Tree Authority this week to clear the issue and ask about the half-hearted work done by them.

Tree Authority Secretary Ganesh Sonune refused to comment on the issue and disconnected the phone call.

167 TREES AFFECTED
In August, the PMC submitted a proposal to its Tree Authority for felling and transplanting 167 trees on the 700-metre stretch of road along Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary from which 123 of these trees are to be transplanted and 44 chopped permanently.

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