Delhi: Notice to CPWD over tree removal, transplanting in non-designated area
Posted by Shivam Patel | New Delhi |
Updated: November 27, 2020 2:16:35 PM
On Thursday, the Central Public Works Department (CPWD) was issued a notice of exhibition reasons by the Delhi Forestry Department explaining why trees removed for construction of the new Parliament building and approved for transplant in the Central Vista area have been planted elsewhere.
The CPWD received permission from the department in October to remove 404 trees from the location of the new parliament building next to the current parliament building and transplant them into eight pockets in the Central Vista area. Forest officials said they were informed that some of these trees, ages 5 to 50 years old, were planted in an eco-park developed by the National Thermal Power Corporation in Badarpur, near the Delhi-Haryana border.
On condition of anonymity, an official from the Forestry Department said, “We asked CPWD to confirm this violation and explain the circumstances in which it occurred. We will take the necessary action under the Delhi Preservation of Trees Act 1994. “
A senior CPWD official linked to the Central Vista redevelopment project confirmed to The Indian Express that “some large trees” removed from the site of the new parliament building have been planted in the eco-park.
The official said, on condition of anonymity, “The decision was made after consulting with experts and examining all other options. The site is ultimately an eco-park and we decided to transplant some trees there due to the lack of space in the Central Vista complex. “
“We planted some smaller trees within the Central Vista complex and some larger trees in the eco-park because they need more space. Here they will be located in an 800 hectare park which is also a project of the Indian government. We will send a clarification to the forest authority on this, ”said the official.
Under the permit given to the CPWD, it was also asked to plant 4,040 tree saplings of native species, 6 to 8 feet tall, in compensation for the 404 trees removed for the construction of the new parliament. These 4,040 trees also had to be planted in eight pockets in the Central Vista area.
The senior CPWD official said of the compensation plantation: “This may need to be done there (eco-park) as there is no technically suitable and adequate land available nearby (Central Vista). We will decide appropriately. “
A forest officer said, “The law states that it is okay for a tree to die. There currently appears to be a violation … The CPWD should have informed us before the area was changed for the transplant. We will hear the circumstances in which they changed the area and investigate the site to see if the transplant was done properly. “
The number of trees removed for transplantation is also higher than that communicated to the Central Environment Ministry’s Expert Evaluation Committee (EAC) when applying for an environmental permit for the project.
In a letter from the ministry dated June 17th, in which CPWD was informed that the environmental permit had been granted, it says: “The project manager has also informed the EAC that there are 333 trees on plot No. 118 (new parliament building). Of these, 100 trees have to be preserved and 233 trees replanted, and no trees are felled. “
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