15 trees felled near Fr Mullers to make way for four-lane

Huge trees providing shade to the vehicle users as well as pedestrians on the stretch between Fr Muller Hospital and Koti Chennaiah Circle (Nandigudda Circle) will be a thing of past.

Now, the authorities concerned have begun felling of trees to facilitate conversion of the stretch into a four-lane concrete road. The stretch has 52 trees and about 15 huge trees have already faced the axe in and around Valencia.

The Forest Department officials said that to facilitate the widening of the road on the stretch, 52 trees aged between 20 and 40 years will be felled. The replant drive will be taken up in July. About 200 saplings of badam, cherry and other trees will be planted parts of the stretch identified by the Mangaluru City Corporation.

It may be recalled that citizens of Valencia, Kankanady and Jeppu in Mangaluru had tied ribbons around the trees on the stretch in order to save them from the axe in 2009 by holding “Vraksha Bandhan.” When the MCC had decided to fell 43 trees on the stretch between Fr Muller Hospital and Nandigudda for road-widening and concreting purposes, the citizens protested against the move of the City Corporation by tying the ribbons. Also, when a few citizens approached the court against the felling of the trees, the court had stayed the process. Hence, the Corporation upgraded the road into only a two-lane concrete road. With the court vacating the stay order, the MCC has decided to widen and upgrade the stretch.

Last bit
Ironically, the Fr Muller Hospital-Nandigudda stretch was the only road that had remained green inside the City.

Vidya Dinker of Mangalore Citizens’ Forum for Mangalore Development said that in a recent meeting of the local residents, the local legislator had promised to develop the road into a model road. If the promises are not fulfilled, then the public will protest in future.

Ashok Mendonca, a member of a local technical committee, said, “A video presentation of a model road was presented before the residents. Our model road concept should have proper stormwater drains, footpaths, bus bays, bus stand, toilets, facilities for the petty shops owners, auto park, and seating facilities for the public under the trees which will be grown by the Forest Department. In the first phase, the road will be developed from Fr Muller’s Hospital to Gerosa School. In the second phase, the road will be developed from Gerosa School to Nandigudda. However, before developing the first phase of the model road, the authorities are felling the trees that come under second phase of the work.”

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