A representation has been given to Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi, seeking his urgent intervention to stop the axing of trees by the authorities in Mumbai's Aarey Colony for constructing a metro car shed.
"As we write this letter to you the Mumbai Authorities continue to kill the lungs of Mumbai, that is, Aarey Forest by clearing of trees near Mithi river bank and according to news reports 1,500 trees have already been cleared by the authorities," reads the letter dated October 6 to Chief Justice Gogoi by Rishav Ranjan, a law student of Lloyd Law College, Greater Noida, representing the delegation.
On Saturday, Bombay High Court refused to entertain urgent hearing in the matter. Justice SC Dharmadhikar refused urgent mentioning in the case and asked the petitioners to approach Chief Justice of Bombay High Court.
Following which the protest ensued in which 38 people were arrested out of which 29 were produced before the Borivali Court, which sent them to judicial custody.
Since late-night itself, many protestors gathered at the site to raise their voice against the felling of trees. As the day progressed, more and more people joined protestors near Aarey Colony area, where the Mumbai Police imposed Section 144, thereby banning unlawful assembly.
"Not only this but our friends are put in jail who were peacefully organising a vigil against the acts of Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) with the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC) at the site. They aren't able to talk to their parents and relatives," reads the representation.
"We want the Supreme Court should immediately give orders to stop the axing of the tress so that at least some tress out of more than 2,700 could be saved," said Ranjan.
"The car shed is sought to be located in 33-hectare land at Aarey. This is on the bank of the Mithi river, which has tributaries and channels flowing to it and emptying in the river. Its absence can flood Mumbai. It has more than 3,500 trees in it out of which 2,238 is proposed to be cut down. The question is why should a forest, which has 3,500 trees in it on the banks of a river be the chosen site for a polluting industry?" reads the representation.
Leaders from various political parties including Shiv Sena and Congress have also condemned the move to fell the trees.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)