Raising concerns over the manner in which permissions are granted to fell trees for various developmental works, the civic body’s Tree Authority members have demanded a No-Objection Certificate (NoC) from the land owner as an essential requirement to be able to cut trees. The move aims at preserving the city’s rapidly depleting green cover.
“In many cases, it has been observed that the permission to cut trees has been granted on the basis of an affidavit submitted by the architect or developer, which were later found to be fake. This is causing a huge loss to the city’s green cover,” said Niranjan Shetty, a Tree authority member.
Shetty added that in many cases, the projects get stuck due to litigation problems between the developer and the landlord. “The Maharashtra (Urban Areas) Protection and Preservation of Trees Act 1975, mandates an NoC from the land owner but civic body is in clear violation of the Act,” claimed Shetty.
Another member of the authority said that the civic body also needs to put in place a mechanism to check the ownership of land, while granting permission to cut trees. Officials from the gardens department said that the issue of land owners is being dealt with by the building’s proposal department, which forwards the proposal to the tree authority. “Still, we will look into the matter and the provision of the act,” said a senior official from the gardens department.
The NoC issue will now be discussed in the Tree Authority meeting that will be held on Monday. The authority will also consider the proposals of cutting around 950 trees in the meeting.