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More than 400 trees axed illegally in sector 111

The land where the trees were chopped falls under general section 4 of the Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA) 1990, where tree felling without the government’s approval is prohibited

gurgaon Updated: Feb 18, 2017 22:02 IST
Ipsita Pati
Ipsita Pati
Hindustan Times
Gurgaon,trees,Gurgaon tree felling
Environmentalists said the indiscriminate felling of trees shows the unbridled power wielded by the land mafia.(HT PHOTO)

As many as 400 trees were axed without permission at Chauma village in Sector 111, around 15 kilometres from the city late Friday night. The trees were felled in an area spread across 11 acres.

The land falls under general section 4 of the Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA) 1990, where tree felling without the government’s approval is prohibited.

The Haryana Forest Department on Saturday issued a report on the incident.

“We have suspended the forest guard. Illegal tree felling has become a routine affair in the region and for want of a proper tree Act, the violators are getting away,” MD Sinha, conservator of forest, south Haryana, said.

Read I Gurgaon lost five times more trees this year

The department has launched an investigation into the matter and has already conducted an inspection of the area. “We got complaint from a resident and have started an investigation into the case,” he added.

The area is close to a project site of a real estate firm and the residents alleged that this is a deliberate attempt by the builder lobby to grab more land illegally. The area is a prime location for realtors, as it is 6 km away from the Dwarka Expressway.

“We approached the forest department regarding illegal tree felling in the area. More than 400 trees have been chopped and the land has been levelled. These kind of activities have been happening in the area over the last few days. The trees were axed and transported to some other places at night,” Rakesh Tiwari, a resident, said.

With incidents of land grab becoming more rampant across the city, environment activists said that it is clear that some people are busy catering to their selfish interests and have no regard for what it bodes for the environment. “This is a clear indication that the land mafia is getting more powerful and are trying to grab land by removing whatever little forest cover the region has,” Vivek Kamboj, an environmentalist, said.

Earlier this month, some people encroached into the forest area in Raisina and started constructing a wall in an area barely 15 kilometres away from the city.

First Published: Feb 18, 2017 22:01 IST