Civic body permits CR to cut 16 trees at Ambernath station
The Ambernath Municipal Council (AMC) has given its nod to the Central Railway to cut 16 trees outside Ambernath station for developmental projects.
The CR had previously written to the AMC, saying it would plant saplings at some other place.
Among the 16 trees, one was already cut last month after its branch had fallen on a parked autorickshaw and had killed the driver.
“We have given permissions to axe the trees because it can pose a threat to lives. Last month, an auto driver was killed. What if more people die? We cannot risk their lives. Besides, we also need to develop railway developmental projects,” said a civic official.
Team The Yuva, a social group, has now decided to stage a protest against the civic body’s decision and is considering moving the court against the CR and the AMC.
“We won’t allow the remaining trees to be cut in any case. We want them to be transplanted. Soon, we will write to the civic body opposing their decision,” said Yogesh Chalwadi, founder member, Team The Yuva. According to Team the Yuva, the 16 trees on CR’s list belong to various species such as Shevri, eucalyptus, Ashoka, Umber, Bair, Neem, Keli and Shevga.
In April, CR had written to the AMC, asking for permission to cut the trees which are on the station’s eastern side, so that it can add additional tracks and infrastructure.
Last month, the AMC had decided to withhold the cutting of 16 trees outside the city’s railway station for two weeks to see if they can be transplanted elsewhere, after environmental groups met with AMC officials and protested against the felling of trees between 70 and 80 years. But they revoked their decision later. “If we move the trees to some other place, it will continue to pose a risk for those living near it, as they old and can fall at any point,” said the AMC official.
Ambernath station, which sees a footfall of 1.5 lakh commuters every day, currently has three operational tracks, two foot-overbridges (FoBs) and one ticket counter. Railway officials feel they need to upgrade the current amenities to provide better services in the future.