The Delhi High Court has asked various civic agencies to complete the de-concretisation of the roots of trees on pavements and road sides across the capital, before the monsoon sets in this year.
The court does not want hundreds of trees to perish in rain and storm as happens every year and wants the process to be completed within three months. A Bench of acting Chief Justice M B Lokur and Justice Mukta Gupta was disposing of a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by lawyer Sugriva Dubey, based on reports in Hindustan Times in August 2009 titled ‘Friday’s storm took down 98 Delhi trees’ and ‘Concrete killing trees: say experts’.
Nearly 100 trees had perished in rain and storm, which lashed the capital on the evening of August 21, 2009. Citing expert opinion, the PIL blames concretisation upto the trunk of the trees on footpaths. However, roads and highways are the primary reasons for trees getting weak as there is no space for it to absorb air and water.
The roots of trees are destroyed because they get little space to grow and anchor the tree. According to a status report by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD), of the total 9,395 trees to be deconcretised, work on 5,223 trees has been completed.
The court pulled up the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) for not filing any status report.