Malabar Hill residents, children stage protest against Siri road widening

  • Mumbai
  • Updated: Nov 30, 2015 17:59 IST
Schoolchildren hug trees in the Kamala Nehru park and hold up placards in a silent protest with citizens on Sunday. (Bhushan Koyande)

More Malabar Hill residents on Sunday joined the protest against the proposed widening of Chiranjilal Loyalka Road, also known as Siri Road. The project would result in several trees from the iconic Kamala Nehru park being cut.

The protesting residents were accompanied by school children with placards in a silent protest.

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation has proposed to cut 72 trees from the Kamala Nehru Park for widening the road, which is currently used as a walkway and is covered with paver blocks.

‘Plant trees’ and ‘Don’t kill us by axe’ were some of the messages displayed on the placards held by the students from various schools in the locality.

Prakash Munshi, a Malabar Hill resident who attended the protest, said, “There is no logic behind uprooting the trees for the road widening project. The decision to widen the road by cutting these trees was taken without conducting any study. The plan should be scrapped.”

Last week too, the residents had protested against the plan when Improvements Committee chairman Prakash Gangadhare visited the site for inspection along with several corporators.

The organiser of the Sunday protest, activist Sanjay Shirke from Siri Road Rasta Bachao Samiti, said, “This plan is absolutely useless because the Siri road is hardly used by vehicles. The cutting of the trees will take away the greenery and charm of the area.”

The protest has got a push after South Mumbai’s Shiv Sena MP Arvind Sawant supported it. “I will write a letter to BMC and demand that the plan be scrapped. Instead of widening the road, the civic body can consider allowing two-way traffic on the road between Kamala Nehru Park and Kemps Corner.”

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