Greens request Thackeray to save Navi Mumbai, MMR salt pans
Appreciating the State Environment Minister, Aaditya Thackeray, for putting his foot down in not allowing any development on salt pans of Mumbai, green groups have requested him to maintain the same firm stand with regard to salt pans in Navi Mumbai and other Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR).
Following Thackeray’s tweet about enough land available for construction in Mumbai, BN Kumar of NatConnect, in a mail, to the minister expressed that apart from salt pans, enough land is available in Navi Mumbai, too, for development.
CIDCO repeatedly has been taking the stand that the Panje and NRI-TSC wetlands are erstwhile salt pans and hence developable, which the environmentalists have deplored.
The NRI-TS Chanakya and Panje wetlands must be spared from the development plans by the government agencies, Kumar said.
NatConnect and Shri Ekvira Aai Pratishtan have opposed the MMRDA plans to develop salt pan areas for affordable housing, pointing out that these areas also serve as wetlands by absorbing tidal and flood water.
Burial of salt pans has already been causing floods in MMR and the urban planners must learn lessons from Nature striking back, Nandakumar Pawar, head of Shri Ekvira Aai Pratishtan, said.
“While the burial of wetlands at Bhendkhal was not undone despite the High Court-appointed Mangrove Committee, there have been repeated attempts to sabotage Panje wetland. The Panje-type sabotage is being repeated at NRI-TSC wetlands by blocking the tidal water flow,” Kumar said.
BNHS, too, said repeatedly that the destruction of these wetlands would force migratory birds, which are used to landing here, fly helter-skelter and threaten the flights.
CIDCO was unavailable for comment.
The Criminal Investigation Department probing the police sub-inspector recruitment scam has arrested one more person from Afzalpur in Kalaburagi district, sources in the CID said. The arrested person is said to be a close aide of one of the key conspirators Rudragouda D Patil. The accused had reportedly provided a bluetooth device to a candidate. He was also a link between Patil and the candidates who passed the exam through unfair means.
Continuing his attack against the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, calling it a "Aryan" organisation, senior Congress leader Siddaramaiah on Saturday urged its leaders to come clean about their loyalty, whether it was for tricolour or saffron flag, constitution or Manu Smriti and Mahatma Gandhiji or Nathuram Godse.
Tibba police busted a honey-trap racket and arrested four persons, including two women, on Saturday. One of the members of the gang has yet to be caught, the police said. The FIR against them has been registered on the complaint of Nagendra Yadav of New Vijay Nagar. A fabric manufacturer, Yadav, told the police that he runs a factory near Puneet Nagar. On Friday evening, he was going to his factory on a scooter.
Bringing relief from the scorching heat, the thunderstorm witnessed in the city on Saturday evening turned the weather pleasant. Partly cloudy weather prevailed in the city since morning and rains, along with strong winds, brought down the mercury levels in the evening. As per the meteorological department, Chandigarh, the maximum temperature in the city was recorded at 40 degrees Celsius while the minimum was 27 degrees.
Division number 8 police have booked an employee of a jewellery shop for allegedly stealing items worth lakhs on Friday. Akash has been identified as Akash of Chaura Bazaar. The FIR has been registered following the statement of Lalit Chopra of Rishi Nagar. The complainant said that on Friday, they were present in the store and were attending to customers.