Metro III work causes distress to trees, people
Tconstruction of Metro III (Colaba-BandraSEEPZ) line is likely to affect 5,012 trees. Out of this, a large number of trees at major junctions like Cuffe Parade, Churchgate, Nariman Point and Airport station which were centuries old were cut to make way for this 33.5 km line.
Around 1,331 will be cut and the remaining 3,681 transplanted as per the initial figures revealed by the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC), the agency managing the construction of this metro line. In addition, 3,574 trees will be affected at Aarey Colony in western suburbs. MMRC plans to transplant 1,727 trees and plant 3,222 trees to make up for the loss.
Residents, activists and environmentalists opposed the felling of trees legally, by way of dialogue with government and MMRC officials and also staging several protests on the street. Activists filed a case in HC and the National Green Tribunal (NGT) stating this construction was a serious threat to the environment.
The court then ordered a stay order on felling of trees considering the claims of activists. The court lifted the stay on felling of trees for Metro III in May and allowed the MMRC to carry on with the construction.
Metro III construction has also troubled people, specially in SoBo. The HC had temporarily restrained the MMRCL from carrying out any construction or ancillary work on the line between 10pm and 6am. It then refused to stay the tunnelling work for the proposed line since a PIL claimed it was affecting several heritage buildings in South Mumbai. Parsis are also opposed to the line and want the project to be realigned as it threatens the sanctity of two fire temples. Shopkeepers in the area are also troubled by the upcoming displacement.