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Controversial stone structures removed

D. Radhakrishnan
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They were erected on botanical garden a week ago

A stone structure being removed from the main lawn of Government Botanical Garden in Udhagamandalam on Tuesday. – Photo: M. Sathyamoorthy
A stone structure being removed from the main lawn of Government Botanical Garden in Udhagamandalam on Tuesday. – Photo: M. Sathyamoorthy

Bowing to public pressure, officials have decided to remove the massive stone structures erected on Government Botanical Garden here a week ago, to other gardens maintained by the Department of Horticulture.

Many persons had pointed out that it violated the ethos of the heritage garden, which was internationally renowned for its natural beauty. Some organisations like the Tamil Nadu Green Movement and the Public Awareness Association of Udhagamandalam had protested the erection of the structures resembling monkeys, fish, a fountain and an elephant.

With opposition to it mounting, officials of the Department of Horticulture that maintains the garden held discussions with representatives of some Non-Governmental Organisations and a few environment activists here on Monday.

Joint Director of Horticulture in-charge J. Haldorai told The Hindu that that the management was of the view that if it does not go down well with the residents and the visitors they can be shifted to elsewhere.

Accordingly they would be taken to other gardens of the department including the new park coming up at Katteri on the Coonoor-Mettupalayam Highway.

The president, Public Awareness Association of Udhagamandalam, G. Janardhanan, said that additions and alterations which do not suit the garden should not even be considered.

Some of the senior citizens who have been regularly visiting the garden for several decades opined that the management should never lose sight of the fact that it was a botanical garden and its appeal lies mainly in its lay out.

They expressed the hope that the officials would replace the rare trees which have over the years been vandalised, damaged or uprooted.


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