Mumbai: Tree fall in Mulund kills auto driver

Updated: Aug 13, 2019, 08:24 IST | A correspondent

Locals say they had complained twice to BMC about dying tree but no action was taken

Mumbai: Tree fall in Mulund kills auto driver
The tree that fell in the wee hours of Monday. Pic /Datta Kumbhar

Mulund residents have been barking up the right tree(s) all monsoon, but the BMC has allegedly been nothing but wooden in its ignorance. Meanwhile, a weak tree has claimed the life of an autorickshaw driver and injured the passenger. After the incident, the civic body has claimed it had trimmed the trees at the start of the monsoon.

Locals had been complaining to BMC to hack the tree on N S Road that fell at 1.08 am on Monday. The tree ended up killing autorickshaw driver Ashok Shingre and injured his passenger, Rajesh Bhandari. This is the fourth such death this monsoon. Bhandari is receiving treatment at the Veer Savarkar Hospital, where his condition is said to be stable.

Also Read: One dead, one injured after tree falls on auto-rickshaw in Mulund

Rickshaw tree
The smashed autorickshaw that was being driven by Ashok Shingre Pic/Nitin Maniar Khatri

Kept reminding BMC

Residents claim the tree collapsed due to weakened roots. Haresh Ramchandani, who owns a varnish store next to the footpath which has the weak trees, said, "If you examine the other trees on this road, you will find that they are completely weakening. The tree does not have a base because it is above a drainage line that is six feet deep and four feet wide. I have written to BMC twice, asking them to either maintain these trees or cut them down because they can cause harm."

Tree mulund
Another tree that looks ready to topple over on the same road. Pic/Nitin Maniar Khatri

Rajesh Arya, in front of whose shop the tree fell, said, "I have informed BMC officials to check the condition of the trees but neither the garden department nor any ward officials have paid any attention to it. Last year, our footpath broke at several places but no one from BMC came to audit or maintain it."

Also Read: Seven killed as car crashes into tree on Mumbai-Bangalore highway

BMC says

Rajesh Bhandari
Rajesh Bhandari was injured in Monday's incident. Pic/Nitin Maniar Khatri

T ward officer Kishore Gandhi said, "We had trimmed the trees on the stretch before the monsoon. This was a very sudden incident. The tree did not have strong roots, which is why it fell; it was in a good condition. There is no way to identify whether or not the base of the tree is in a good condition or if we should cut it. To the victim and injured, BMC will give the compensation that is decided upon; I don't know theexact amount.

Tree fall incidents across the city

  • On June 14, a tree branch fell on and killed Malad resident Shailesh Rathod, when he was returning home from a temple.
  • The same day, a tree fell on and killed Nitin Shirwalkar at Anushakti Nagar in Govandi.
  • On June 13, a tree collapsed on Anil Ghosalkar at a housing society in Jogeshwari, critically injuring him. He later succumbed to his injures.

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