HindustanTimes Tue,30 Sep 2014

Capt opposes 'wanton slaughter' of trees in Amritsar

IANS  Amritsar, May 28, 2014
First Published: 19:24 IST(28/5/2014) | Last Updated: 22:22 IST(28/5/2014)
Amritsar's newly-elected MP Capt Amarinder Singh Wednesday warned against the indiscriminate cutting of trees in the Punjab city in the name of road-widening and setting up of the Bus Rapid Transport System (BRTS), saying he would move court if this was not stopped.

"I am not against the development and widening of roads, but I am definitely not going to allow the indiscriminate slaughter of trees in Amritsar, some of which are as old as 200 years," he said in a statement here while referring to the cutting down of trees in the city.
The former Punjab chief minister said hundreds of trees were earlier cut in the name of the Personal Rapid Transport System (PRTS) which never saw light of the day and now more were being cut for the BRTS.
"Nobody is sure whether it (BRTS) will ever reach its logical conclusion," he said.
Amarinder Singh said that proper procedure must be adopted with due clearances from the departments concerned like forests and environment, while new trees should be planted at alternate places to cover up the loss of the trees being cut down.
"I have seen several trees having been chopped off in the name of road widening when these could easily have been saved and retained," he said. "We can't allow wanton slaughter of our trees in the holy city."
Amarinder, who defeated senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader Arun Jaitley in the parliamentary elections, said that Amritsar city residents were concerned at the cutting of trees in the name of development.
The Sikh holy city of Amritsar is home to 'Harmandar Sahib', the holiest of Sikh shrines. It is visited by millions of devotees and other visitors from across the country and the globe annually.
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