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Human chain formed to protest tree-cutting for Mumbai Metro

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Press Trust of India Mumbai
Environmental activists formed a human chain at Marine Drive in south Mumbai Saturday to protest tree-cutting in the city for the ongoing Metro rail construction.
They also demanded that political parties include environmental issues in their manifestos for the Lok Sabha elections.
"This chain is the city's way of declaring that its citizens will not vote for any party that does not address environmental concerns in its manifesto for Lok Sabha elections," said Amrita Bhattacharjee, a senior member of the Arey Conservation Group (ACG).
Wildlife conservation activists, students and representatives of those displaced because of various development projects were among those who took part in the chain which extended for almost a kilometre.
"We want to save the only green lungs of the city," Bhattacharjee said, referring to Arey Colony in north Mumbai. "And why only Mumbai city, environment-related issues in the entire country should be addressed with a top priority," Bhattacharjee said.
The ACG is agitating to protect the green cover in Arey Colony, where around 2,700 trees are to be cut to make way for a car-shed for Metro.
Trees are being chopped down arbitrarily for the Metro and activists are not allowed to be present when trees are cut, Bhattacharjee said,

Advocate Abhishek Bhatt, another activist, said, "Measures for protection of ecology do not feature in any political agenda across the country."

Tribals and Kolis (fishermen), original inhabitants of Mumbai, were being driven out from their lands for so-called development, the activists said in a statement.

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First Published: Mar 30 2019 | 8:01 PM IST

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