Coastal road project: Bandra residents, fisherfolk unite to protest

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: Aug 15, 2015 23:00 IST

Not content with simply filing objections to the coastal road’s detailed project report (DPR) on the BMC website, citizen groups in Bandra are also organising protests against it. Hundreds of residents turned up for a protest at Carter Road and Bandra Bandstand on Saturday morning.

The estimated 300 people who participated in the protests included schoolchildren, college students, senior citizens and fisher-folk from neighbouring Khar and Mahim. They formed a human chain and held up placards to voice their opposition to the project.

HT Photo: Pratham Gokhale

One protestor said that apart from destroying the city’s coastline, the road will also increase air pollution. The massive land reclamation it requires will leave Bandra even more prone to flooding, said another. Fisher-folk who joined the protest said the road would run their livelihood and vowed to continue protesting until the project is scrapped.

Sumaira Abdulali, convenor of Awaaz Foundation, an NGO, said, “The coastal road will increase air pollution as there will be additional traffic in an area from which winds carry pollutants into the city. Mumbai is already among the most polluted cities in the world and its citizens need a reduction in air pollution.”

HT Photo: Pratham Gokhale

PK Das, an urban planner, said, “The entire DPR design has been done mindlessly. The environment impact of the project will be very serious as the sea will be disturbed. Also, there is also no clarity on the construction of the tunnels shown in the DPR.”

The protesters plan to spread the agitation to other parts of the city. They will coordinate with south Mumbai residents to organise a public meeting next Sunday. Darryl D’monte, trustee of the Bandra West Residents Association, said, “We will coordinate with south Mumbai residents and organise a public meeting near Priyadarshini Park.”

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