A day after Hindustan Times reported cutting of mangroves along Vashi creek at Kopar Khairane, forest officials visited and inspected the site.
On Monday, HT had reported that around 500 mangrove trees were hacked down by some unidentified people near the Ganpati talav, at sector 19. The locals have now started fishing in that area.
“We visited the site on Monday morning and saw the damaged mangroves. It appears that the trees were being cut over the past several months. We collected statements of the local people. However, we have not been able to identify the ones responsible for this,” said Prakash Chaudhary, range forest officer of Navi Mumbai.
“We will prepare a report of this incident and submit that to our seniors,” he said. Another forest officer said that patrolling in that area would also be increased.
“Apart from Kopar Khairane, mangroves were destroyed at many other places of Navi Mumbai. Several near DPS School in Nerul were cut off and near TS Chanakya junction along Palm Beach road in the past. Recently, a large number of mangroves were cut by some unidentified people near Mansarovar railway station,” said Abba Ranvare, an environmentalist from Nerul.
Debojeet Sharma, another activist from Kamothe said, “To destroy the mangroves the culprits purposely construct some concrete walls amid mangrove trees near Mansarovar station. Because of the walls, water cannot enter those area and the mangroves dry up. This is how they are strategically destroying the mangroves.”