VIJAYAWADA: Of late, the city has been witnessing rampant tree felling, regardless of the harm the act is posing to the environment. Even as bitter memories of cutting down of decades-old trees at Victoria Museum on Bandar Road are still afresh in the minds of the denizens, a 40-year-old tree has been chopped off by unidentified persons on Sambamurthy Road beside Vijaya Talkies bridge Friday night.
Though the sight of axing of the decades-old trees will dishearten the environment-lovers, it has become a common sight in Vijayawada. “The very first thing the officials do for development is to axe the trees.
Tree-felling is always related to electricity department works or municipal works or construction works of roads and buildings department. Even if the work needs cutting of a few branches, the whole tree bears the brunt,” complains Velaga Srinivas, state secretary of Jana Vignana Vedika. Taking a cue from the government departments, even private persons are axing the trees in government areas, just with the motive of selling them as wood.
As there is no one to question such activities, tree felling is going on unabated in the city.
For a city which faces severe problems during summer due to rising temperatures, a steep decrease in tree count will only pose more problems to the people in future. “The trees on either side of Eluru Road, Bandar Road, BRTS Road and NH16 between Benz Circle and Ramavarappadu Ring were cut off for road widening. In fact, among all the cities in Andhra Pradesh, Vijayawada has the lowest number of trees,” worries environmentalist T Sree Kumar.