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Maharashtra CM Thackeray stays Metro carshed work

PTI Mumbai | Updated on November 29, 2019 Published on November 29, 2019

Chief Minister of Maharashtra Uddhav Thackeray

Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Friday announced a stay to construction of metro carshed in the city’s green lung Aarey Colony, where strong protests had erupted last month against cutting of trees for the work.

The BJP slammed the decision, with former CM Devendra Fadnavis saying that it will discourage investors and stall infrastructure projects in the city. Thackeray, who is heading a Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress coalition, was sworn in on Thursday.

Then BJP-led government in Maharashtra had come under fire from green activists in October when over 2,000 trees were felled for a carshed, to be constructed in Aarey Colony which is adjacent to the Sanjay Gandhi National Park.

The Shiv Sena, then junior partner in the Devendra Fadnavis government, had opposed the felling of trees. “I have stayed Aarey carshed work. I will review the entire thing...I will not allow a culture where trees are cut at night,” Thackeray told reporters.

“Not a single tree leaf will be cut till further orders,” he added, while clarifying that metro work itself has not been stayed. A Supreme Court bench had last month sought a status report with pictures on plantation, transplantation and felling of trees in Aarey colony area.

The Bombay High Court had on October 4 refused to declare Aarey Colony a forest and declined to quash the Mumbai municipal corporation’s decision to allow felling of over 2,600 trees in the green zone to set up a metro carshed. Hours after the court gave a go-ahead, tree were cut at night, fuelling outrage.

Reacting to Thackeray’s announcement, his predecessor Devendra Fadnavis said it was “unfortunate that State Government stayed Aarey Metro carshed work in spite of Hon Supreme Court & Hon High Court orders”.

“This shows State Government is not serious about Mumbai Infrastructure projects! And ultimate sufferer is common Mumbaikar only !” Fadnavis tweeted with hashtag “savemetrosaveMumbai”.

Published on November 29, 2019
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