Mumbai

‘Aware of flak to concretisation of Mithi river’s floodplain’

Environment Minister Aaditya Thackeray, while talking on river rejuvenation in the Council on Thursday, said the floodplain of the Mithi river is inside Aarey colony. “We are working on a solution,” he said, without referring to construction of the Metro car shed. Activists have repeatedly said the construction inside Aarey will lead to flooding.

Soon after assuming power, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had asked for a review of the car shed’s location, and a committee formed to look into its feasibility had ruled that Aarey was best suited for the car shed. However, the government has not accepted the report yet. Even though the 2,700-odd trees have been cut inside Aarey for the project, activists are still opposed to the construction as it is the catchment area of the Mithi.

A calling attention motion related to the Vainganga river in Vidarbha was taken up in the House. Leader of Opposition Pravin Darekar then highlighted the poor state of rivers in Mumbai. To this, Aaditya said, “We are working on all rivers. The proposal for funds from Niti Ayog is pending for 21 rivers. We have proposed water purification plants in 13 villages. We are constantly inspecting untreated sewage discharge and issuing closure notices wherever required.”

The minister said the issue of the Mithi is that there is a question whether it should be considered a river, estuary, back stream, or nullah. “The work on the Mithi clean-up is going on. There is a question about Aarey, which is the Mithi’s floodplain, and whether we are concretising it. The issue had faced opposition. We are considering what measures can be taken there. Besides, we are constructing a retaining wall around the Mithi, building sewage treatment plants, and addressing issues of floating garbage, sewage discharge, and removal of silt. I take a review regularly. The rivers in Mumbai will be rejuvenated soon and will even be opened for tourism.”

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Printable version | Jun 5, 2020 9:07:38 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/aware-of-flak-to-concretisation-of-mithi-rivers-floodplain/article30994707.ece

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