India: High court declares privately owned Mangroves as protected forests

Bombay high court has declared 1,806 hectares of privately owned
mangroves in the city as forests. The notification was issued by
divisional commissioner S S Sandhu on February 24. “With this move
preservation of mangroves can be carried out like a forest. Simply
put, such areas cannot be developed,” Sandhu said.

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Rishi Aggarwal of the Mangrove Society of India said, “What is the use
of introducing new rules for mangrove protection. At the ground level,
mangroves are being destroyed systematically. Last week, I reported
about one such case at the BKC but no action was taken.

The existing regulations like CRZ notification, the Environment Protection Act, Forest Conservation Act and Maharashtra Protection of Trees Act are good enough to tackle the situation.

But no action is taken and newer laws are passed. At present, mangroves are being destroyed at Eksar, Bhayander, Gorai, Diva, Lokhandwala complex and Dahisar.” State government sources said that they will soon declare privately owned mangroves in Thane and Raigad districts too as forests.

“But if this really takes place, it will be difficult for the Navi Mumbai international airport project to take off.”

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Comments (2)

Ravi MenonMarch 10th, 2009 at 1:09 am

Here in West Bengal also, our mangroves in the sunderbans are under threat from its own protectors !! The proposed huge chemical hub in the Nayachar island is an example of how development takes precedence over environment protections !!

Vikram VermaApril 10th, 2009 at 8:05 pm

Dear Mr. Sandhu,

I would like to contact you as I am in search for information regarding mangroves…if I may request you to kindly email me your contact details.

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