Gurgaon: Axe falls on more than 70 trees in Aravali hills
The tree felling is a blatant violation of strict orders from the National Green Tribunal (NGT) to maintain status quo in the Aravalis. Cutting trees without permission in general section 4 is also prohibited as per the Aravali notification.gurgaon Updated: Apr 13, 2017 23:54 IST
More than 70 trees were axed on Tuesday in Sarai Khwaja in Faridabad. The area comes under general section 4 of Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA), 1900.
This large-scale tree felling is a blatant violation of strict orders from the National Green Tribunal (NGT) to maintain status quo in the Aravalis. Cutting trees without permission in general section 4 is also prohibited as per the Aravali notification.
The forest department has seized an earth moving machine from a 2-acre area. “According to preliminary inquiry, the area was notified under the Aravali Plantation area,” a forest official said.
“A complaint has been lodged with the police against unknown persons. The district forest officer did not receive any tree felling request. We will carry out further investigation into the matter,” MD Sinha, conservator of forest, South Haryana, said.
The area is prone to tree felling activity and in the last one year, more than 19 cases of tree felling were registered in the Faridabad Section 4 area.
The area close to the Mangar Bani, which is believed to be a sacred grove in Faridabad, falls under the Aravali Notification issued by the Union ministry of environment and forests and cutting of trees in the area without permission is prohibited.
However, environment activists said that even as the forest department has a dedicated forest unit to patrol the area, tree felling incidents have not declined. “The region is losing its green cover and the state government is not taking stern steps to reverse the trend. Every day, Faridabad and Gurgaon see heavy and indiscriminate felling of trees. However, till date, not one person has been convicted for this crime,” Vivek Kamboj, an environment activist, said.
Last month, land mafia attempted to encroach into the forest area in Mangar near Asola Wildlife Sanctuary.