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  Metros   Mumbai  23 Mar 2018  Give park to forest department, say activists

Give park to forest department, say activists

THE ASIAN AGE. | SONALI TELANG
Published : Mar 23, 2018, 5:38 am IST
Updated : Mar 23, 2018, 5:38 am IST

The MNP boasts of about 38 species of butterflies and more than 80 species of birds.

Sudhir Mungantiwar
 Sudhir Mungantiwar

Mumbai: Environmentalists have demanded that the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) should immediately transfer Maharashtra Nature Park (MNP) land to the Forest Department to eradicate commercialisation in the nature park. Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and state forest minister Sudhir Mungantiwar has also claimed that no construction activity would be allowed in the nature park as it was notified as protected forest in 1991.

Mr Mungantiwar tweeted, “There is no question of MNP being included in Dharavi redevelopment. As per protocol, before mooting such notification for inviting suggestions and objections the concerned officials should have sent a proposal to the forest department. We would not have cleared it in the first place”. 

He further mentioned, “MNP was declared a protected forest in March 1991, anybody who intends to misuse the protected forest land will have to go to jail. I want to assure every Mumbaikar that MNP will not be touched. Our department will take a strong stand in this case.” 

Environmentalists feel that unless the forest department takes over the land from MMRDA, it will be misused commercially. “Even if there are assurances of no constructions in the Mahim nature park, there is a fear that later the 41-acreland will be shown as a built up area. With more built up area, the FSI will increase, attracting further commercialisation. We have been stressing on transferring the land to the forest department but nothing has been done,” said Stalin Dayanand, project director, NGO Vanashakti. 

The MNP boasts of about 38 species of butterflies and more than 80 species of birds. 

Tags: environmentalists, mumbaikar, vanashakti, mnp