The National Green Tribunal (NGT) today sought the Delhi government’s response on a plea against proposed felling of trees by the PWD as part of “landscaping work” associated with construction of an elevated corridor from Vikaspuri to Madhuban Chowk here.

A vacation bench headed by Justice V R Kirgaonkar also issued notice to the Public Works Department (PWD) and the Forest Department and sought their responses by the next date of hearing on July 12.

The bench further directed the forest department to nominate an appropriate authority “to conduct proper survey for the purpose of environment impact assessment (EIA) in the context of possible damage to the environment which may be caused on account of removal of the trees for the alleged ‘landscaping’ of the road as proposed”.

The tribunal’s order came on the plea by residents of the area who have challenged the PWD’s project saying there is no need to fell the trees, numbering around 3,000, as these are standing on road sides and not on the central verge where the elevated corridor is coming up.

“The trees are standing along the service lanes on both sides of the outer ring road and not on the central verge, where the pillars are to be erected. Thus, the trees are not an obstruction to the elevated road/flyover as they are more than 220 feet away from the central verge and do not fall in the alignment of the project,” the petitioners said.

The petitioners, including environmentalist Aditya Prasad, have sought directions stopping the forest department and the PWD from “causing damage to the trees and their illegal felling and removal from the Outer Ring Road no 26”.

They have also sought directions to the authorities “to fill up the digging made so far and restore appropriate conditions for the trees”.

Courtesy: Business Standard