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Posted at: Jun 24, 2018, 6:55 PM; last updated: Jun 24, 2018, 6:55 PM (IST)

NGO moves NGT challenging felling of 16,500 trees in South Delhi

NGO moves NGT challenging felling of 16,500 trees in South Delhi
People hug trees at Sarojini Nagar during a protest against the proposed felling of around 16,500 trees in south Delhi area, on Sunday. Tribune photo: Mukesh Aggarwal

New Delhi, June 24

An NGO has moved the National Green Tribunal seeking a stay on the proposed felling of more than 16,000 trees for re-development of seven south Delhi colonies by the National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC) and the Central Public Works Department.

The petitioner - Society for Protection of Culture, Heritage, Environment, Traditions & Promotion of National Awareness (SPCHETNA) - claimed that environmental clearance has been granted to seven General Pool Residential Accommodation colonies in Sarojini Nagar, Netaji Nagar, Nauroji Nagar through NBCC and in Kasturba Nagar, Thyagraj Nagar, Srinivaspuri and Mohammadpur through CPWD by ignoring the fact it would have adverse effect on the ecology.

It has claimed that planting of saplings at another location as compensatory afforestation would not reduce the burden put on the environment due to large-scale felling of trees.

The matter is likely to come for hearing before the tribunal on July 2.

Anil Sood, president of the NGO, told PTI that the Centre has given clearance to the project without considering several factors such as existing population density in the area, impact of cutting 16,500 trees on the ambient air quality in the area.

The plea said an environment impact assessment report for the project around South Delhi shows that 11,000 trees will be cut in Sarojini Nagar, 1,465 will be cut in Nauroji Nagar, 3,033 will be chopped off from Netaji Nagar and another 520 will be felled from Kasturba Nagar out of a total of 19,976 trees in these areas.

The re-development plans to rebuild existing units of Type I to IV with a build-up area of around 7.49 lakh sqm with Type II to VI units with built-up area of around 29.18 lakh sqm with supporting social infrastructure facilities.

The project will also develop government office accommodation for nearly 2.42 lakh sqm at Netaji Nagar. The total estimated project cost of Rs 32,835 crore includes maintenance and operation costs for 30 years and will be completed in five years in a phased manner. - PTI

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