To Deputy Conservator of forest, BBMP
Karnataka State Forest Department
Ask: Extend the deadline for sending public objections to tree cutting in Bangalore
The BBMP on Friday issued a notice stating that 1,026 trees need to be axed for Namma Metro Phase 2A on Outer Ring Road from Central Silk Board to KR Puram and up to Baiyappanahalli Depot 13 elevated Metro station.
These trees are home to hundreds of birds and small animals. They often provide shade to motorists. At the moment we do not have a number of heritage trees, massive, evergreen, and with sprawling canopies or an understanding regarding the environmental impact of our city. During this lockdown, citizens cannot adequately understand the impact of this project in order to raise objections. This is bypassing due process.
The current proposal has been divided into subsections which does not accurately represent the total number of trees to be cut. Experts believe that the total number might be more than 3000 in this project.
In 2020, more than 1000 trees were cut amidst lockdown and it was condemned by the High Court of Karnataka.
The manner and conduct of such decision-making authorities were widely criticized by environmentalists, civil society groups, think tanks, etc. Questions were even raised on ‘due diligence and lack of credibility.
Under the current 14-day state wide curfew, citizens are locked inside their homes fearing for their life and our judicial system is burdened with ‘most urgent’ covid 19 relief-seeking cases. The environment has taken a backseat for citizens and the judiciary alike.
Rights of citizens are curtailed, movement is limited. Currently citizens do not have access to any environmental redressal forums be it courts or tribunals.
Trees, the most natural source of oxygen need to be protected, now more than ever.
Take the next step and send letter to our government bodies