Res­i­dents bat­tle dump­ing of de­bris at Kharghar lake

‘Wet­land Norm Vi­o­la­tions Still Con­tinue’

The Times of India (Mumbai edition) - - TIMES CITY - BB Nayak

Navi Mum­bai: Mis­cre­ants con­tin­ued to dump con­struc­tion de­bris and other waste around Kharghar lake in Sec­tor 35, be­sides ve­hi­cles were il­le­gally ac­cess­ing the wa­ter body de­spite Cidco pro­hibit­ing swim­ming, fish­ing, en­try of ve­hi­cles and wash­ing.

The wa­ter body’s size has re­duced sub­stan­tially over the years due to il­le­gal dump­ing. In a let­ter to Konkan Wet­land Griev­ance Re­dres­sal Com­mit­tee, res­i­dents de­manded bar­ri­cades and in­stal­la­tion of CCTV cam­eras to nab vi­o­la­tors. The res­i­dents, who are beau­ti­fy­ing the area, are aghast over the way the lake is los­ing its scenic beauty.

“We have been tire­lessly clean­ing the area and plant­ing trees to save it. Young and old cit­i­zens have been restor­ing the pond by in­creas­ing green­ery and clear­ing the rub­bish reg­u­larly. En­thu­si­as­tic mem­bers of so­ci­ety are con­tribut­ing their bit to pro­tect the en­vi­ron­ment around, but the au­thor­i­ties are do­ing noth­ing,” said a res­i­dent, Dhar­men­dra Kar.

De­spite their at­tempts, ve­hi­cles are il­le­gally ac­cess­ing the pond and dump­ing of trash con­tin­ues. Jagdish Patil, the Konkan di­vi­sional com­mis­sioner, who also heads the Wet­land Griev­ance Re­dres­sal Com­mit­tee, said, “We have con­vened a meet­ing on Mon­day to dis­cuss vi­o­la­tion of wet­land and man­grove norms in the re­gion. It will be at­tended by of­fi­cers and mem­bers of var­i­ous agen­cies.”

“De­bris is be­ing dumped right un­der the noses of Cidco of­fi­cials. The Cidco sign­board alone will not de­ter the mis­cre­ants from de­stroy­ing the area. In fact, the au­thor­i­ties have been ap­prised of the sit­u­a­tion re­peat­edly but they do not take any ac­tion against those flout­ing the rules. We have sug­gested to top of­fi­cials in var­i­ous de­part­ments to in­struct the agency con­cerned to take care of the wa­ter body,” said ac­tivist, Nareshchan­dra Singh.

On Satur­day, lo­cals no­ticed an ex­ca­va­tor lev­el­ling the dumped de­bris along the res­i­den­tial side of the lake. “It was shock­ing to see the lev­el­ling by eat­ing into the wa­ter body. This is a gross vi­o­la­tion against preser­va­tion of wet­land as the high court re­cently warned agen­cies to stop de­struc­tion of wet­lands in the re­gion,” said a res­i­dent, Manohar Rawat.

K C Singh

An ex­ca­va­tor lev­el­ling de­bris on the res­i­den­tial side of Kharghar lake

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