Despite High Court stay, trees 'axed' in Sangrur

Area residents demand strict action

Despite High Court stay, trees 'axed' in Sangrur

Trees that were cut on the Sangrur-Patiala road. tribune photo

Tribune News Service

Parvesh Sharma

Sangrur, May 18

The latest axing of some trees by the Punjab State Forest Corporation (PSFC) on the Sangrur-Patiala road despite the Punjab and Haryana High Court’s stay has residents fuming.

The Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) has written to various departments and directed not to cut any tree as the HC has stayed the axing of trees. Demanding a strict action, area residents have said they would move the court again for the contempt of HC against officials concerned. “Since the Public Works Department (PWD) has deposited the mandatory money with our department for axing of trees and we did not get any information about the stay, our team went to cut trees. But after getting the information, we have stopped the axing,” said Amrik Singh Project Officer, PSFC.

Had no info on HC order

We did not get any information about the stay. But after getting the information, we have stopped axing. —Amrik Singh, Project officer, PSFC

Show-cause Notice issued

I have issued a show-cause notice to the PWD. We will take further action after receiving the report from the department. —Monica Yadav, Sangrur DFO

He added a total of 523 trees were to be axed on the outskirts of Sangrur for the widening of roads. He alleged PWD offices must have checked about the stay before depositing the mandatory amount with their department for axing of trees.

“It’s the contempt of HC order, which has stayed the axing of trees in Sangrur,” said Jasinder Sekhon, a local environmentalist.

Sangrur DFO Monica Yadav said: “I have issued a show-cause notice to the PWD and sought its response that on what basis the department got axed some trees through PSFC. We will take further action after receiving their report.” However, PWD Executive Engineer Vaneet Singla said there was some communication gap between his department and the PSFC. “When there is an HC stay, PFSC should not have axed trees,” he said.

#Environment #Sangrur #tree felling

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