The next time local authorities ignore complaints against destruction of mangroves, you can directly approach the chief minister with your grouse.
Chief Minister Ashok Chavan, on Friday, said people could directly come to him if their complaints are ignored.
“I have taken serious note of such instances. People should complain to me. I will take the erring officials to task,” said Chavan. “Conserving mangroves is essential for any coastal city like Mumbai.”
When questioned about the Navi Mumbai airport plan, which involves destruction of 415 hectares of mangroves, Chavan said, “We have told the environment ministry that we are not averse to changing the original plan of the airport.”
Chavan also rubbished reports that the central environment ministry was unnecessarily holding up projects in Maharashtra.
The state government is considering an option of shifting non-aeronautical components of the airport to the south of the proposed airport complex site to minimise destruction of mangroves and water bodies.
Under the original plan, the non-aeronautical components are to the north of the airport on 415 hectares of mangroves and water bodies. The new option would mean that the Gadhi river, which flows through the airport site, need not be diverted in a major way. The central environment ministry has expressed concern that diversion of the Gandhi river could result in flooding at nearby Panvel.