Bengaluru

Residents protest illegal tree cutting menace

Residents protest against unauthorised felling of trees on Outer Ring Road at Bellandur.   | Photo Credit: Handout E Mail

Irked by unauthorised felling of trees on Outer Ring Road at Bellandur, residents took to the street on Saturday, demanding action against the offenders. They alleged that there have been at least four incidents of trees being chopped illegally, with the most recent being on May 9 when 24 trees were felled overnight, allegedly to make way for a hoarding of a private builder.

“These were all trees planted over the last four years. They were at least 12 feet high. Overnight, the trees were chopped,” said Jayanta Tewari, member of Sun City Residents’ Welfare Association, Iblur.

Residents had brought the incident to the notice of BBMP forest cell officials, who, after a spot inspection, ensured that the hoarding was taken down. However, on May 18, the hoarding was back, residents lamented.

Cholarajappa, DCFO, BBMP, said an FIR was registered against the individual who put up the hoarding. “We ensured that the hoarding was brought down. However, I heard that they have put it back again.”

Forest cell officials felt that the Palike’s revenue division needs to be more stringent while granting permissions for hoardings.

Activist Vijay Nishanth, who has been following cases of unauthorised tree fellings, said, “This is the fourth case in a series of incidents linked to commercial interests to increase visibility of hoardings. The cases are with the Lokayukta.”

Odette Katrak, one of the residents who took part in Saturday’s protest, urged all residents to be vigilant. “We want to send a strong message. We want the residents to be vigilant about tree cutting. Such acts are done stealthily at night.”

Residents of Iblur, HSR Layout, Whitefield, Cox Town, Hebbal and J.P. Nagar also took part in the protest.

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Printable version | Jan 16, 2021 1:43:50 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/bangalore/residents-protest-illegal-tree-cutting-menace/article23937890.ece

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