Dwarka Residents Claim DMRC Destroying Park – Times of India – 29-Dec-2014
December 30, 2014 - Uncategorized
Residents of Dwarka Sector-20 want the 80-hectare green patch near their homes to be converted into a biodiversity park. But Bharat Vandana Park, which falls under DDA and has been marked as ‘recreational green’ area in the Master Plan 2021, currently looks more like a construction site with a large part of it completely concretized and several trees missing.
Residents claimed that Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, which has set up its casting yard at the park, has ‘destroyed’ a larger area than what it was allotted. Also, several trees have been chopped for firewood by people living nearby, right under DMRC’s nose. “DMRC was allotted around 15 hectares in 2012 but it has cleared around an additional 3ha of forest area,” said Diwan Singh, an environmental activist and resident. Residents claim to have complained to the police and filed an FIR against DDA for failing to protect the land.
“Residents of different sectors who recently gathered at the site to stop the movement of trucks were shocked to see the condition of the park. DMRC is already drawing a lot of water and now they have concretized the land, which will affect groundwater. We have been campaigning with DDA to convert this area into a biodiversity park,” added Singh.
“Metro officials cemented the park so that they could park their cars. How can this be allowed? DDA, too, doesn’t seem very concerned about so many trees being chopped. If the government does not intervene, it will be difficult to restore the park to its original condition,” said Captain SS Mann, another resident.
A water body inside the park was recently restored by local environmentalists who also documented the presence a good variety of birds, especially peacocks, monitor lizards, hare and nilgai here.
Meanwhile, a DMRC spokesman said when residents gathered at the site to stop construction on Saturday, they were told that proper permissions had been obtained from DDA to carry out work but the group refused to budge. “Construction of Dashrathpuri station on line 8 under phase-III is going on. The residents claimed the access path to the batching plant is on encroached land. They refused to leave till they were given a written assurance that the concrete surface will be removed,” an official said.