After finding discrepancies in the Haryana Urban Development Authority’s (Huda) execution of Chakkarpur bundh project, the forest department on Thursday cancelled the permission granted for restoration work.
The 5.2-kilometre long bundh, stretching from Chakarpur village to Sector 56 was to be converted to a city forest after the bundh was chosen for an eco-restoration project in January. Part of the project from Chakkarpur village to Galleria market was given to the Huda and the rest was being taken care by an NGO ‘I am Gurgaon’. The project was to be completed in four months and while the NGO has adhered to the deadline, the Huda has not started work.
A letter from the forest department to the Huda on Thursday said, “….you were also directed to visit the work being executed by NGO in the remaining portion of Chakkarpur Bundh to execute work in similar pattern.”
“This callous attitude in executing the work by Huda officials shows their unwillingness to accomplish this work. Therefore, the earlier permission granted by this office stands null and void,” the letter said.
Conservator of forests (south circle), Gurgaon, MD Sinha conducted an inspection at the bundh this month and found several discrepancies in the work of the Huda.
“The Huda has failed to take up the work in the project. Apart from laying tiles, no other work has been done. The stretch will soon revert to a dumping ground,” Sinha said.
Official records say there are 118 bundhs in Gurgaon, Faridabad and Nuh districts. Most of these structures are in prime locations and are targets of land mafias.Citizen groups have been demanding that these should be protected as green areas.
The Chakkarpur project has climate and environment sensitive design. It has a rainwater harvesting system with flow-through permeable patches for groundwater recharge. Also, local trees are being planted.
“We are in a time where we are losing traditional water bodies from the urban landscape. There were important flood protection sites and also resulted in considerable groundwater recharge in the area. Thus, restoring these sites are important from an ecological point of view,” Sinha said.
The Huda confirmed that it has stopped work on the bundh. “We have stopped work on the stretch as directed by the forest department,” a senior official Huda official said.