Expert Committee Formed to Decide on Additional 8000+ Trees Cutting for Delhi's GPRA Colonies; Image source:

Expert Committee Formed to Decide on Additional 8000+ Trees Cutting for Delhi’s GPRA Colonies

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A six-member expert committee has been established by Delhi’s State Environment Impact Assessment Authority (SEIAA) and the State Expert Appraisal Committee (SEAC) to decide whether the National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC) should be allowed to cut over 8,000 additional trees for the construction of the General Pool Residential Accommodation (GPRA) colonies in the city. The committee formation follows a complaint by an environmental activist, alleging NBCC’s violation of a 2018 Delhi high court order.

In 2018, plans were announced to cut more than 16,000 trees across seven areas of the city as part of the GPRA redevelopment project. However, legal interventions led to a reduction in the number to 6,997 trees. Earlier this year, NBCC approached the Supreme Court to seek permission to cut an additional 8,000 trees, claiming that plants had grown into full trees.

Based on the activist’s complaint filed in March, SEIAA and SEAC established the expert committee to investigate the matter. According to the activist, NBCC has already cut down the originally specified 6,997 trees and now seeks to cut an additional 8,416 trees, totaling over 15,000 impacted trees. This number is seen as unacceptable, especially considering that 133,117 trees were already cut in the capital between 2019 and 2021, as per the forest department’s data.

The expert committee, comprising members from SEIAA, SEAC, and a representative from the forest and wildlife department, will conduct a site visit to assess the situation and determine the necessity of further tree cutting. The committee’s main objective is to address the concerns raised in the complaint and make an informed decision based on their findings.

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