Less than half compensatory trees planted so far, says Delhi forest department

As per rules, the compensatory plantation has to be completed by the user agencies within six months from the time the permission for tree felling is granted.

Published: 18th September 2022 08:07 AM  |   Last Updated: 18th September 2022 08:07 AM   |  A+A-

NEW DELHI: Not even half the number of saplings which were to be planted in compensation of trees felled for various development projects in the national capital over the past three years has been completed. While 10 saplings have to be planted in lieu for each tree that is felled, only less than half the target has been met so far in the city. Of the total 409,046 saplings to be planted under compensatory plantation in the city for the period ranging from 2019- 20, 2020-21 and 2021-22 (figs till May 31 this year) for various construction projects, only 158, 522 (or 38.7%) have been planted, data submitted by the Delhi forest department in an affidavit filed in the High Court showed.

While in some projects the plantation is still in process, there are many where not a single sapling had been planted till the time the report was prepared. The Delhi Preservation of Trees Act (DPTA), under which the permission for felling of trees is granted, mandates that for each tree felled, 10 saplings have to be planted by the user agency.

Data shows that major infrastructure projects such as the Delhi-Ghaziabad-Meerut RRTS alignment, Maujpur to Majlis Park corridor, WTPs at Chandrawal and Kondli, among others are those which are not even close to completing the target. The user agencies include Central Public Works Department (CPWD), Public Works Department (PWD), Delhi Development Authority (DDA), Delhi Metro Rail Corporation and Delhi Jal Board (DJB), among others.

As per rules, the compensatory plantation has to be completed by the user agencies within six months from the time the permission for tree felling is granted. According to the forest officials, repeated reminders have been sent to the user agencies for completing the plantation work, but many are yet to do so. “Granting of tree felling permissions was stopped for a while to ensure that the agencies do the requisite plantation before new projects are taken up,” said a senior official. The data also showed that of all the trees transplanted in the city during the same period, only one-third have survived.

India Matters


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