A solution seems to be in sight for the dense mangroves near Sector 8 in Charkop at Kandivli, which were under threat by illegal construction. In order to protect the crucial cover from getting destroyed, the Maharashtra Forest Department Mangroves Cell, along with the help of other departments, has plans to start the demolition of some 100-150 illegal structures that have come up there.
It should be noted that there are huge and dense mangroves plantation in the Charkop area behind Sector-8. However, in the past few years, it has been observed that encroachment has slowly been taking place in the area adjacent to the mangroves. When the Mangroves Cell was newly formed by the Maharashtra Forest Department, it had started a survey of mangroves cover in and around Mumbai. While doing the survey, it came to light that there were approximately 100-150 illegal structures that had come up in the No Develoment Zone (NDZ) near Sector 8 at Charkop, Kandivli and that there were chances of it eating up into the mangroves plantation.
Taking serious note of the same, the Mangroves cell has plans to start the demolition and make the area encroachment free. Speaking to SUNDAY MiD DAY, Chief Conservator of Forest (CCF) Mangroves Cell, N Vasudevan, said, “The Mangroves Cell was created by the Government of Maharashtra on January 5, 2012 to protect, conserve and manage the mangroves of the state. We are doing our duty and in order to make the area behind Sector-8 in Charkop encroachment free, along with the local ward office, we will soon demolish the illegal structures.”
A demolition drive on a very small scale had taken place prior to Diwali, but the Mangroves Cell has plans for a major demolition drive in the coming few days. It should be noted that the illegal encroachments in the area are residential as well as commercial. The authorities have already informed the illegal residents that their structures will be demolished soon.
The Mangroves Cell was formed with the intention of creating awareness about the importance of mangroves and to train staff for effective conservation of mangrove areas. The Cell was also formed with a view to increase the mangrove cover of the state. In the past the Cell has undertaken several plantation programmes in degraded mangrove areas.