Paved area economics is behind many of Delhi's trees dying a premature death - choking on concrete that cuts off water and oxygen supply.
Since 2007, there have been three court orders asking public authorities to clear the earth around the trees of concrete so that they get adequate oxygen and water supply.
One of the departments conceded before the national green tribunal on Friday that for the sake of "pavement economics", "de-choked" trees were again concretised.
"When contractors build pavements, money is paid on square feet basis. With the intent of earning more money, they do not take court judgments seriously and concretise areas around trees," one of the petitioners Aditya N Prasad explained.
This also means waste of public money - on cementing the area and then undoing it. "The cycle continues for economic benefits," the tribunal said, warning the agencies of action if the practice continued.