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Suburban rail project: HC stays felling of 699 trees    

A division bench of Chief Justice NV Anjaria and Justice KV Aravind passed this order after hearing an interlocutory application (IA) filed in a PIL petition. The petition was filed by Dattatreya T Devare and Bangalore Environment Trust, seeking a tree census in Bengaluru.
Last Updated : 12 June 2024, 21:55 IST

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Bengaluru: In an interim order on Wednesday, the High Court of Karnataka has barred authorities from cutting down 699 trees for Corridor 2 (Benniganahalli- Chikkabanavara) of the Bengaluru Suburban Railway Project (BSRP) until July 12.

A division bench of Chief Justice NV Anjaria and Justice KV Aravind passed this order after hearing an interlocutory application (IA) filed in a PIL petition. The petition was filed by Dattatreya T Devare and Bangalore Environment Trust, seeking a tree census in Bengaluru.

In an office memorandum dated May 29, 2024, the BBMP's Deputy Conservator of Forests, who also serves as the Tree Officer, authorised the felling of 699 standing trees to widen the road. The memorandum also specified that 89 trees would be translocated.

During the hearing, the petitioner’s counsel argued that the court's directives had not been followed. The counsel noted that the order regarding tree felling was supposed to take effect 15 days after being uploaded on the BBMP's official website.

During the hearing, the Chief Justice remarked that trees should not be cut unless it was absolutely necessary.

"No Kannada-speaking citizen would like to cut it, so also I, even though I do not speak Kannada. We will look into it. Why should you unnecessarily cut the tree unless it is extremely necessary?” the Chief Justice said. 

The division bench has granted the BBMP time until July 8 to submit its response to the IA.

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Published 12 June 2024, 21:55 IST

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