Mumbai Local

Minister backs metro car shed, Sena says no

A day after Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis hinted that the government will go ahead with the Mumbai Metro III car shed at Aarey Colony, the differences between the ruling allies BJP and the Shiv Sena over the issue came to the fore on Saturday. At a sustainable development convention, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar backed the CM’s stand on the issue, while Shiv Sena’s Industry Minister Subhash Desai opposed the move.

While stating that the loss of 350 trees to accommodate the Mumbai Metro car shed at Aarey Colony was not good, Mr Javadekar said it should not be a roadblock to development.

The Minister said sustainable solution for the metro car shed at Aarey Colony was possible if an alternative of identifying the good trees and replanting them was explored. “The technology is now available to replant grown-up trees through mechanised uprooting and replanting them at an alternative site. Delhi Metro is a standing example, where for every one tree cut, five more trees were planted,” the Minister said at the 11{+t}{+h}National Convention on Sustainable Development Goals.

Present on the dais was Mr Desai, who urged the Minister to also give a hearing to the sentiments of the people.

Later Mr Desai told reporters that he was confident that the proposed car shed would be relocated to an alternative location.

However, Mr Javadekar treaded cautiously on the politically sensitive subject at a press conference at the BJP headquarters.

“The metro car shed issue is a state subject and comes under the purview of the Urban Development Department. Aarey Colony is not forest land. It is non-forest land, and hence my ministry is not in the picture.”

The Shiv Sena, Maharashtra Navnirman Sena, and environmental activists have been against the car shed. Following the opposition, Mr Fadnavis had stayed the decision, and appointed a committee to examine an alternative site at Kanjurmarg. However, on Friday, he said the choice is between cutting 350 trees and replanting 3,500 trees, and spending Rs 1,500 crore for relocation.

He said the terms of references for industrial regions which earlier took 12 to 13 months, were now issued within a month. He said the environment clearances process has been made online from July 4, 2014, allowing project investors as well as the government to track the application online and remove any hindrances.

Sustainable solution

for the metro car

shed at Aarey

Colony was possible,

says Javadekar

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Printable version | Jul 28, 2021 5:13:20 PM |

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