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Wednesday, Sep 18, 2019

Delhi HC stops further cutting of trees near Sunder Nagar

The Delhi High Court also asked the Delhi government’s public works department (PWD) to give a detailed drainage plan to check water logging in underground U-turns.

delhi Updated: Aug 05, 2019 23:30 IST
Richa Banka
Richa Banka
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
The Delhi High Court on Monday restrained the authorities from further felling trees for the construction of an underground U-turn at Sunder Nagar.
The Delhi High Court on Monday restrained the authorities from further felling trees for the construction of an underground U-turn at Sunder Nagar. (Pradeep Gaur/Mint)
         

The Delhi High Court on Monday restrained the authorities from further felling trees for the construction of an underground U-turn at Sunder Nagar.

It also asked the Delhi government’s public works department (PWD) to give a detailed drainage plan to check water logging in underground U-turns.

Justice Vibhu Bakhru asked the officer concerned to appear in court on the next date of hearing to address problems such as water logging that have been seen in similar underpasses.

“It is directed that the respondents are restrained from felling any trees on this stretch, i.e from the underpass near the Delhi Zoological Park entrance to that of Delhi Public School,” the judge said in the oral order.

It said the petitioners would have the full opportunity to satisfy themselves on the aspect of cutting of trees and said: “The representative of the petitioner will approach the Executive Engineer concerned, who shall point out which trees on the stretch are required to be felled”.

The court was hearing a petition filed by an association of Sunder Nagar residents, who said the construction of an underpass or underground U-turn will cause fourfold problems of traffic congestion, water logging, enormous number of trees being cut and non-availability of footpaths for pedestrians.

A senior PWD official said, “We informed the court that trees were felled after obtaining permission and compensatory plantation has already been done. We have completed nearly 50 % of the project. Very few trees have to be felled in the area (Sunder Nagar) now. This will be done in consultation with residents.”

The official added, “The court has sought the drainage map and said trees would be cut only after confirmation from residents.”

On Monday, appearing for the petitioners, advocate Pawanjit Singh Bindra told the court that the association had suggested an alternative plan to address traffic chaos on Mathura Road around Delhi Public School.

Bindra said the scheme would make Mathura Road narrow, depriving pedestrians of walking space. He said entry and exit into the colony would be affected due to the construction.

The petitioners said the construction would lower drainage level and overlooks the fact that during monsoon, there will be water logging and water from low lying areas will flow directly into the colony.

After hearing the arguments, the court said, “It is seen that the drainage plan has neither been shared with the petitioners nor has been produced before this court. It is directed that a copy of the drainage plan be given to the petitioner as well as the court.” The matter would be now heard on August 28.

First Published: Aug 05, 2019 21:58 IST