Bengaluru: The Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Ltd (BMRCL) has given approval on Thursday December 23 by the Karnataka High Court to cut 577 trees, translocate 212 trees, and retain 44 out of 833 trees on various stretches of Phase-2A of the Metro project, as suggested by the Technical Experts Committee (TEC).
The High Court noted that judges are not experts in deciding whether or not 577 trees can be taken down after the TEC has issued its opinion. The order has been issued by a division bench of Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi and Justice Sachin Shankar Magaum, who were reviewing the BMRCL’s application for permission to cut trees based on the TEC report. According to the court, retaining 44 trees and translocating 212 trees can conserve up to 256 trees, as proposed by the TEC.
The court was hearing a public interest litigation filed by Dattatreya T. Devare and Bangalore Environment Trust in 2018 regarding the Karnataka Preservation of Trees Act’s non-implementation. In the meantime, the court allowed the Karnataka Road Development Corporation Ltd. to cut 18 trees and translocate nine trees for the Bengaluru Surrounding Roads project, citing the need for new plantation, as recommended by the panel, to compensate for the trees proposed to be felled.