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Govt. Contractor makes third abortive attempt to chop tree at Vikas Chowk despite DM's stay order

Dr Nitin Pandey

14-April-2010

A Government contractor, who had "bought" a tree located near Vikas Chowk in a government auction, made a third abortive bid on Tuesday to chop down the tree, inspite of DM's orders to suspend the felling, by claiming ignorance of the orders. This attempt was thwarted by volunteers of Citizens For Green Doon who reached the spot and informed the DM Mr. D Santhil Pandiyan early morning on Tuesday about the flouting of his orders. Direct intervention by the DM, saved the life of the tree, at least for the moment.

CFGD prevents tree felling at Vikas Chowk
CFGD protestors surround the contractor

It may be recalled that the PWD under JNNURM is planning to increase the width of the right turn from Old Survey Road into Convent Road through the Vikas Chowk by felling a majestic Tun tree there. The contractor who "won" the tree sent laborers on Saturday morning, who withdrew in face of stiff resistance from the local shop keepers. In a second bid to get his timber, the contractor returned to the site on Monday with his "friends" who shooed away the shop keepers when they again protested. News this time reached Citizens For Green Doon tree helpline, and within a few minutes a large number of volunteers reached the site and again forced the contractor to stop work. The contractor withdrew his men after a 4 hour tense standoff. On Monday evening CFGD members approached the DM for a review of the PWD plan and the DM obliged them by suspending the felling till he heard their version.

In spite of DM's suspension, the contractor returned to the site for a third time on Tuesday morning with a much larger number of "friends" and laborers and within 20 minutes managed to chop off all the major branches of the tree and damaged the main trunk. When confronted with CFGD volunteers again, the contractor claimed ignorance of the orders. Appeals by the volunteers to the police Sub Inspector Vipul Tamta of the Dalanwala Police Station that the DM had indeed ordered suspension of the felling, failed to move him and he insisted on written orders, inspite of being told that by the time written orders arrived, the tree would have been felled. As a last resort the DM was telephonically contacted and he was surprised to hear that the tree was being cut inspite of his orders on the contrary. Within minutes of the call to DM, a call arrived on the mobile phone of the contractor, who then withdrew his laborers, after exchanging "not so pleasant" talk with the protestors.

CFGD prevents tree felling at Vikas Chowk
The unfortunate Tun tree

Speaking to reporters, Ravi Maheshwari, a member of CFGD, said that the plan to ease the congestion on Old Survey Road by widening the right free turn was flawed because the cause of the congestion was the narrow two way road between Survey Chowk & Vikas Chowk and widening the right free turn, which was never congested anyway, will have no effect on the congestion on Old Survey Road. He said that the solution to the problem was either making the road between the two crossings one way or widening that road. But, he said, since this road had shops and offices on both sides the Government was taking an easy way out by widening the already wide Rt free turn at the junction. Venu Dhingra, a CFGD member, informed that the DM had called a meeting on Thursday to discuss the issue and had assured them that the tree was safe till then. She said that the group will insist on transplanting the tree at another location instead of being felled.

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Date30-Dec-15
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Date15-Apr-10
From: Mamta
I would appreciate you AND those Noble Men and Women whose efforts were responsible for the saving of the trees..... Save trees save environment for us and our future generation ,




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