Nagpur: The Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Nagpur, has sought permission to cut 294 trees on its campus for the three proposed projects including platinum jubilee celebration of the hospital, paying ward and a new hostel. One of the applications states that at least 21 trees — mostly Ashoka and Neem — need to be chopped for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the hospital for the platinum jubilee celebration.
Despite strict rules by the Maharashtra Government to curb tree-felling, the cases of illegal chopping of trees in the city are increasing day by day. Even the Government authorities are adopting various ways to tweak the rules for cutting trees. In a recent incident, the administration of Government Medical College and Hospital (GMCH), Nagpur has sought permission from Garden Department of Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) to fell 294 trees in its premises. In this regard, NMC published a notice of public hearing in local newspapers on May 22 and invited written objections from citizens within seven days of publication of the notice.
Apart from this, the GMCH has also submitted another application seeking chopping of more than 200 trees for setting up of a new treatment facility for leprosy patients.
NMC Garden Superintendent Amol Chaurpagar confirmed this and said that the NMC has received applications from the GMCH seeking permission to chop over 400 trees by submitting three different applications.
“However, after spot inspection, we reduced the number to 294 and succeeded in saving over 100 trees,” Chaurpagar claimed.
“The NMC’s Tree Authority Committee headed by Chairman and Municipal Commissioner Radhakrishnan B will take a decision on these applications next week,” said Chaurpagar. The NMC has published an advertisement in this regard in local newspapers.
The first application sought permission to chop 21 trees for the platinum jubilee celebration of the GMCH in December this year. The application states that these trees were obstructing the pre-planning of the PM’s programme.
Permission has also been sought to chop 86 trees for constructing an 80-room paying ward. Another application asked for cutting 187 trees to pave way for a new girls’ hostel, having 400 rooms, for undergraduate students.
According to the public hearing notice, the GMCH administration has asked the Garden Department to fell 21 trees in its premises for its upcoming Platinum Jubilee event scheduled in December 2023.
Few years ago, the GMCH administration had cut more than 180 trees for construction of its Trauma Centre in the hospital premises which was not required. No one raised an objection then. But this time, the environment activists are objecting to the cutting of 294 trees in GMCH premises.