The court said that the inconvenience caused by Metro works may take a year but would be good for our future generations in the long-term.
Mumbai: The Bombay high court on Thursday observed that the Metro Project is the need of the hour and people opposing it should take a practical view considering the ground realities. The court said that the inconvenience caused by Metro works may take a year but would be good for our future generations in the long-term.
The division bench of Justice V. M. Kanade and Justice A. M. Badar was hearing an application filed by Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) seeking permission to cut 108 mangroves for Metro station in Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC). MMRDA had to move high court because, in its earlier order, in a PIL regarding mangroves filed by the Bombay Environmental Action Group (BEAG), the court had mandated taking its permission for anything concerning mangroves.
During the hearing, advocate Robin Jaisinghani, who had represented one of the petitioners opposing cutting of more than 5000 trees for the Metro Project, intervened and told the bench that as per the Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) there cannot be an underground construction in CRZ area and hence the court should not allow cutting of mangroves.
Following this, advocate Kiran Bagalia on behalf of the petitioner, argued that MMRDA and MMRCL have all the permissions and clearances and that the intervener is no way concerned with this matter. She told the bench that MMRCL has undertaken the restoration of green cover removed for construction of Metro III Project and a loan has been taken for the project, which could have huge cost repercussions if project works get delayed.
Meanwhile, reacting on the intervener’s arguments, Justice Kanade said that there is no need for activists and residents to take an adversarial stand. He also said that the situation of traffic in the city has gone bad to worse and metro should have been in Mumbai 30 years back.
The bench has posted the hearing on Tuesday and has directed BEAG to file its reply on MMRDA’s application.