iconimg Sunday, August 30, 2015

Nikhil M Ghanekar, Hindustan Times
Mumbai, December 20, 2012
Even a month after the forest department filed a preliminary offence report against the civic body over the destruction of mangroves at the Kanjurmarg dump yard, it is yet to send an explanation.

The forest department had also sent four reminders. The report was filed on November 23 after senior forest officials visited the dumpsite, following complaints of mangrove destruction by MLA Manesh Sangle and Vanashakti, a non-governmental organisation.

“We have repeatedly asked the civic body to explain whether or not it had caused damage to the mangroves. In every notice, we have pointed out the narrowed culverts are causing stagnation of tidal flushing, which is crucial for the growth of mangroves,” said Anil Toradmal, range forest officer, Mumbai.

HT had, on November 27, reported that around 75% of the mangroves in plot-A (12.09 hectares) had died, while in plot-B (11.27 hectares) around 60-70 mangrove shrubs had died. Only three culverts facilitate seawater intrusion in plot-A while there are 13 culverts in plot-B. Of the total 141.77 hectares at the landfill site, 23.36 hectares comprise mangroves.

Ramesh Sabre, executive engineer, solid waste management department, said, “We are looking at ways to remedy the obstruction of sea water. We are in the process of sending our reply to the forest department.”

The Bombay high court’s order in October 2005 stated that obstructions impeding the flow of seawater must be removed.