In Ghaziabad, if all goes well, you may be able to get a house-tax rebate and contribute to the environment at the same time. All you have to do is plant a tree. The Ghaziabad Mayor has proposed a monthly house-tax rebate to people who plant at least one tree in front of their houses.
Mayor Damyanti Goyal told Hindustan Times that a proposal has been prepared and will be tabled in the Municipal Corporation board meeting. As part of the initiative, the Mayor has proposed that a monthly house-tax rebate of Rs 50 be granted to those who plant a tree in front of their house which is at least 100 sq yards in area.
“If the resident does not plant a tree, then the municipal corporation will plant a tree and the house owner will be charged for its maintenance. The responsibility of the maintenance will rest with the house owner,” Goyal said. There are nearly 2 lakh such houses in the municipal corporation area.
“Those living in high-rises will be motivated to create a small garden of plants in pots. The initiative is proposed to save the environment and help the city maintain its greenery,” she said.
This way, the municipal corporation expects to plant around 2 lakh trees in the city.
“Every individual should contribute to save the environment and the proposal is welcome,” said Vijay Pal Baghel, an environment activist.
Municipal Commissioner Basant Lal told Hindustan Times that the proposal is expected to maintain the greenery in the city and is expected to be passed after due consideration to the effect on revenues. “Such a proposal has been considered to save the environment. Every board member should accept the proposal for the benefit of the environment,” Lal said.
As per the Forest Department officials, 5.5 lakh plants were planted in 2009-10 and 17.326 lakh plants were planted in 2008-09, including the forest areas, by different development agencies in Ghaziabad district.
Considering the city’s vast geographical area of around 2590 sq. kilometers and rapid pace of housing development projects, the forest area in the district has shown only a marginal rise of around .23 per cent as compared between years 2003 and 2007 as per Forest Survey of India reports.