Tribals protest against the alleged illegal activity at Film City in Goregaon on Friday
A city-based environmentalist has alleged that land filling is going on at an eco-sensitive zone (ESZ) at Film City in Goregaon near Sanjay Gandhi National Park (SGNP), allegedly to construct a set. The spot in question is used for the cultivation of paddy by local tribals. Environmentalist Stalin D has written a letter to the deputy conservator of forest Thane, collector of Mumbai Suburban district, environment secretary and chief conservator of forest, SGNP, red-flagging the activity.
"Kindly take action against land-filling activity that has commenced in the ESZ area of SGNP. The site is located at Film City and apparently, some film set is sought to be made at the site. To the best of our knowledge, the ESZ committee has not permitted this activity," the letter reads. It also states that the land is a paddy field, which is used for cultivation by tribals.
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"Change of land use is not permissible nor is land filling legal. We also use this opportunity to remind the forest department to take back excess forest land of approximately 50 acres that is in possession of Film City. Kindly initiate action at the earliest and stop this change of existing natural features of the land inside the notified ESZ," the letter reads.
A tribal resident of the colony said, "One of our tribal brothers, Kisan Bhagat, has been carrying out paddy farming on his ancestral land at Film City for several decades and we have photographic evidence of this. On December 2, the staff of the Film City administration told Kisan Bhagat that they were giving this land up to shoot a serial. On December 1, they came and began land filling on the site. We want to appeal to the authorities to clear the soil that was dumped on our tribal brother's land as soon as they can because this land belongs to us."
Day Land filling began