Green belt on Pune’s DP road under threat, says NCP leader

NCP leader alleges bid to promote commercial construction in the green zone

pune Updated: Dec 16, 2017 23:44 IST
Abhay Khairnar
Abhay Khairnar
Hindustan Times, Pune
dp road,green zone,ncp
UDD issued a directive to the civic body to conduct a survey of the DP road recently. (Pratham Gokhale/HT Photo)

The Nationalist Congress Party’s (NCP) city unit president and MP, Vandana Chavan, has raised serious objections to the state government’s move to change the reservation of the green belt on DP road between Rajaram bridge to Mhatre bridge and convert it to a residential zone.

In a letter to chief minister Devendra Fadnavis last week, Chavan has charged that this is being done by the urban development department to promote commercial activity and related construction in the green zone.

Well-known for her environmental activism, Chavan said that although there was pressure to change the reservation of the road between Rajaram bridge to Mhatre bridge, the PMC did not change it while preparing the Development Plan. Even the chief minister who heads the urban development department had approved the Development Plan on January 5, 2017 and retained this zone as a green zone. This was especially because the Mutha river passes through this area, she noted.

She pointed out that in the recent past, the National Green Tribunal had directed that the green belt be protected and had ordered the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) commissioner to take action against encroachments by restaurants and marriage halls within the blue floodline of the river.

Despite this background, the urban development department, recently, issued a directive to the civic body to conduct a survey of the area and submit the details to it. The intention of this directive is very clear which is to change the reservation from green belt to residential zone and legalise commercial activity, Chavan said in her letter.

Speaking to Hindustan Times, the NCP leader said, “It is absolutely wrong that a decision to change the reservation is being taken at a very high level in the state government. On one hand, the state government has issued orders to protect the hills by not allowing construction near it and on the other hand, the same department is taking steps to harm the riverbed and disrupt the green zone.”

Chavan appealed to the chief minister to intervene in the matter and prevent bureaucracy from violating the green zone.

First Published: Dec 16, 2017 23:42 IST