Supreme Court file image. (Photo: PTI)
New Delhi: Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) told the Supreme Court on Friday that not a single tree has been felled in Mumbai’s Aare Colony since October 2019.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for MMRCL, told a bench headed by Justice U U Lalit that no more trees would be felled for the Metro carshed in Aarey Colony, which had submitted a representation before the Supreme Court in 2019 and since then, not a single tree has been felled there. “I had made a statement that no more trees will be cut and I have filed an affidavit today that no trees have been cut,” Mehta told a bench comprising Justice Anirudh Bose and Justices. SR Bhatt.
The Supreme Court was hearing a petition alleging that the authorities had resumed felling of trees in Aarey Colony. Mehta said there were some bushes on the land which have been cleared and some branches have been trimmed so that vehicles can pass through the approach road there.
“It was trimming. I have said that in the affidavit. The felling of trees is not going on,” he said. While taking the affidavit on record, the Bench said that pending further consideration, no specific interim directions are called for in view of the stand taken in the affidavit filed on behalf of the Corporation.
“Suffice it to say, as stated by the concerned respondent, no further trees have been cut after the order dated October 7, 2019 and will not be cut in any way till the next date of hearing,” the bench said in the post. The hearing will be held on August 10.
In 2019, the Supreme Court had itself taken cognizance of a letter petition addressed to the then Chief Justice by a law student seeking a stay on felling of trees in Aare colony. After the Solicitor General submitted on behalf of the state of Maharashtra that no more trees would be cut, the Supreme Court had restrained the authorities from cutting down any more trees in Aarey Colony.
Green activists and residents have opposed the cutting of trees in the colony.
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