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People have already supported our cause. Have you?

Help us send as many mails to authorities, so that together we can save the
little green that’s left, from turning into concrete grey.

Mail the objections!.
#SaveMNP. #LetMumbaiBreathe.

The ‘Maharashtra Nature Park’ (Mahim Nature Park earlier & abbreviated as MNP) is located exactly on opposite side of Dharavi slums. This nature park has magical woodland with 14 thousand trees, 300 varieties of plants with few as herbs, a lake, 100’s of varieties of migrating birds, insects, beautiful butterflies, reptiles and few mammals too. While it is home to about 85 different species of butterflies, 154 species of birds, 32 reptiles, and 200 tree species, it remains among our city’s few air lungs left.

The MNP project was conceived in 1982 by decorated ornithologist Salim Ali and undertaken by Shanta Chatterji and the Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Developmental Authority (MMRDA). It was inaugurated in 1992 and was initially restricted to school children for nature trails and bird watching. Two years on, however, it was opened for nature lovers at large. The only one of its kind in Mumbai, this mini forest created with the idea of conserving the ecosystem and has had a footfall of over 1.5 lakh every year.


The Issue

The Maharashtra government’s Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) is planning to include a portion of the nature park, which is also a protected forest, within the area earmarked for the redevelopment of Asia’s biggest slum in Mumbai’s Dharavi. According to the SRA’s proposal, the Maharashtra Nature Park (MNP), spread over 16.86 hectares, is to be included in the project to increase the land available for redevelopment.

The state government’s proposal to use the 41-acre Maharashtra Nature Park in Mahim, one of the city’s last surviving green spaces, for redeveloping Dharavi is an ecological suicide.The Maharashtra Nature Park is a ‘deemed forest’ as per orders of the Supreme Court. Not an inch of its biodiverse sprawl should be touched by developers. This is now also a ‘soak’ that helps control monsoon flooding of the Mithi River. City planners seem unaware of the damage they inflict on Mumbai city.

There is a serious issue of depletion of open spaces in Mumbai and this plan must be strongly opposed. The MNP is a declared protected forest and cannot be included in the notified area of a special planning authority. Once the area is included in the SRA area, the government will be able to exercise powers to use it any manner in the name of serving a ‘public purpose’ without inviting any suggestions or objections from the public. Even though a lot of noise is made about this, we want the forest department to formally notify this area under their jurisdicition.

Story So Far

2018

March 2018- A lot of noise around the SRA scheme, we further ask the State Forest Department to take the land from Forest Department

2017

July 2017- Vanashakti sends letter to CM to ask MMRDA to give back the park to Forest Department.

1994

In 1994, the Maharashtra Nature Park Society took over the work and began allowing general public to visit the park.

1992

Inaugurated for school children, nature trails and bird watching,

1983

First Tree planted by Late Salim Ali

1982

Around 1982 – 3 members of World Wildlife Fund and renowned  ornithologist ‘Salim Ali’  envisioned a nature park

1977

Late 1977- About 40 acres of land was pure garbage dump and just filth

Sign The Petition

Dear Sir ,

In February 2018 a division bench of Justice Naresh Patil and Justice Nitin Sambre was informed that there is nearly 32,000 sq km of wetlands in Maharashtra.

 

Additional Government Pleader (AGP) G W Mattos informed the judges that pursuant to their earlier orders, the government with help of the centre at Ahmedabad, Gujarat, conducted mapping of wetlands by using satellite. He said, “After using satellite to map wetlands in the state, it is learnt that nearly 32,000 sq km of land in the state is covered by wetlands. This comes from the report prepared by the centre at Ahmedabad, Gujarat, which is the only centre in the nation to conduct satellite mapping.”

Mattos also informed the judges that the government has created a mobile app which is given to all the local authorities, who would be obtaining details and specifics of the wetlands in their districts. “These local authorities are tasked with measuring the wetlands in their districts. They would be preparing report of the same and forward it to us and we will then notify the wetland and implement the rules contemplating protection of the wetlands,” he said.

 

The judges were also informed that as a pilot project, the government would start notifying wetlands in Sindhudurg and Ratnagiri districts and implement the Wetland Rules, thereby protecting the wetlands in these regions. Meanwhile, several developers moved applications seeking permission from the court to continue with their construction work, which was banned way back in 2013, by another bench of the High Court.

 

Having heard the contentions of the developers and also the submissions of the government, the judges have asked advocate Mattos to clarify stand on the pleas of developers. The judges have asked the government to spell out if it would allow the construction work before the wetlands are notified.

 

The authorities like CIDCO , JNPT , and developers like Reliance SEZ are taking benefit of this vaccume and are on a spree to destroy the wetlands before they get notified.

 

  1. Recently we had to move Bombay High Court to stop filling up of pond in Sector 19 Kharghar by CIDCO appointed contractor.

 

  1. The Wetland of Panje , Uran is also under threat of getting filled up by private developer.

 

  1. The wetlands behind NRI Complex in Nerul and Chanakya institute have been allotted to a private builder for making Golf Course and residential towers by CIDCO and we were forced to approach Bombay High Court to preserve them.

 

The list of Wetlands being filled up or being eyed by developers are endless and need immediate protection by way of notification by State government .

 

The wetlands are spread all over Navi Mumbai – Nerul , Vashi , CBD Belapur , Ghansoli , Kharghar , kamothe ,  kalamboli , Panvel , maansarovar , uran , Panje in Uran etc.

 

Please notify these wetlands immediately and implement the Wetland Rules, thereby protecting these wetlands.

 

Thanking You ,

Two simple steps to voice your opinion and do your bit to #SaveMNP.