GHMC says plantation is being restricted to non-functional footpaths
The footpath space along the city roads is very little. And even that is mostly occupied by parking spaces, junction boxes, electricity poles and of course, in several instances, trees.
The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC), however, maintains that plantation is being restricted to non-functional footpaths and those not being used by the pedestrians. Trees are also being planted on footpath stretches having adequate widths to accommodate them without encroaching into the pedestrian space.
The effort is to ensure that the tree cover does not come as a hindrance to those walking down and for this purpose, the Corporation has removed metal tree guards at several places, a senior official explained.
“Last year itself we have removed more than 5,000 tree guards after the plants became big enough and because these guards occupy space,” the official said.
Hanging tree branches causing obstructions to the footpaths are being chopped off, he adds. “On the main roads, we are going for plantation on the medians and also footpath spaces which are wide. We pay attention to ensure that the effort for green cover to the city does not cause hindrance to pedestrian movement,” says N. Chandramohan Reddy, Additional Commissioner (Urban Biodiversity).
But then, Mr. Reddy stressed the need for plantation drive in the city to ensure that eco-balance is maintained.
“The importance of tree plantation is to be appreciated for the sake of maintaining the city’s green cover. We are already losing so much of green cover for road widening and other works,” he points out.
All the medians on the main thoroughfares and also the colony roads in the GHMC jurisdiction are being covered by the afforestation drive.
“We are not touching the footpaths that are in use and do not have the required width both for pedestrians and trees,” Mr. Reddy adds.