Berhampur, July 24 (LocalWire): Expressing concern over depleting green cover in and around Berhampur city, engineers of road and building (R&B) department here have decided to consider alternatives to avoid cutting of trees for construction purpose and relocate them instead.
“While widening the road, care should be taken to limit the cutting of trees and action should be taken for translocation of old trees where ever possible,” R&B southern circle superintendent engineer BK Padhy said in a note sent to the executive engineers in the region.
The move came after the recent public outrage against the proposed chopping of around 200 major trees in MKCG Medical College campus for widening the 1.3-km long road into four-lane.
The contractor, who had chopped around seven trees, was forced to stop the felling of trees due to the protest.
Sabuja Bahini, a Non Government Organisation with the help of others, had relocated three of these trees. “Almost all the trees are in good condition after we relocated them,” Bahini’s president Sibaram Panigrahy said.
“Not only for this particular road, we have asked the executive engineers to avoid tree felling during the widening of the roads everywhere and, if necessary, plan relocation of all major trees,” Padhy said.
He also asked the engineers in his circle not to put concrete and to leave open over one meter area around the base of the trees during construction of roads to facilitate percolation of water to the roots of the trees.
“The government departments may add a fresh clause in their tender documents that at least one meter area around the base of trees should be left de-concretize,” he said.
Green activists have hailed the decision of Padhy.
“It is a welcoming step. This will help maintain greenery in Berhampur and its adjoining areas which has already depleted due to several cyclones during the last six years.
The initiative will help re-generate the green cover,” Aryabhatta Foundation founder Sudhir Rout said.
Rout and his organisation had taken up massive plantation drive in the district during the last ten years.
“There will be no problem in relocating trees. In the last six months, we had shifted around 50 major trees in the city and most of them are alive,” Panigrahy said.