The legal tussle between environmentalists and the government over the construction of Metro depot at Aarey Colony is set to take a new turn with the entry of a citizens’ group.
The group has filed an intervention application in the ongoing legal battle in the National Green Tribunal (NGT), seeking clearance for the depot proposed in the colony. The group includes people from different fields — businessman Michael Pereira, consultant Avinash Gupte and interior designer Rajan Vernekar.
Acting on petition filed by NGO Vanashakti, the NGT had, in August, passed an interim order, banning construction activities in the colony. The tribunal’s next hearing is scheduled on Tuesday.
“Although the Metro projects will lead to cutting of a number of trees in the colony, it will help in keeping a large number of cars off the road. It will lead to significant reduction in air pollution,” Pereira said.
This group is the first voice of support for the Colaba-Bandra-Seepz Metro-3 from citizens.
Meanwhile, Gupte claimed the car depot will not have any significant negative impact on the biodiversity. “The plot earmarked for the depot is surrounded by roads on three sides and Mithi River on the fourth side. The area is negligible,” Gupte said.
The NGT will be apprised of the need to boost eco-friendly public transport system in the city, said Pereira. “Metro is the most eco-friendly mode of public transport as it does not lead to any sort of emission. It will encourage people to use it than their personal cars,” Pereira said.