Delhi Lt. Governor V.K. Saxena on Thursday wrote to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, questioning the delay in disposal of applications on granting permission for tree translocation for various projects of CPWD, DMRC, Indian Railways, resulting in waste of public funds due to time and cost overrun of the projects.
In the letter that has been accessed by IANS, the LG mentioned: “Several major projects have been held up for an unreasonable period of time for want of permission for felling/translocating trees under the Delhi Preservation of Trees Act, 1994 by the Department of Forest and Wildlife, GNCTD.”
The letter reads further that some of the important projects held up on account of the above reason include Redevelopment of General Pool Accommodation at Sriniwaspuri, Sarojini Nagar, Construction of Executive Enclave of Central Vista Project, Construction of Residential Quarters for Central Industrial Security Force, Corridors of Delhi MRTS Phase IV, Dwarka Expressway, EMU at Hazrat Nizamuddin Railway Station etc.
The LG in the letter has said that Section 9(3) of the Delhi Preservation of Trees Act, 1994 mandates that the Tree Officer shall give his decision within 60 days from the date of receipt of the application seeking permission to fell, cut, remove or dispose of a tree.
“It has been brought to my notice that a significant number of applications seeking permission for tree felling under the Delhi Preservation of Trees Act, 1994 are pending with the Department for varying periods of time beyond sixty days. In some cases the pendency is exceeding more than a year,” said LG Saxena in the letter.
He said further that such unwarranted delays in disposal of applications regarding permission is resulting in waste of public funds due to time and cost overrun of the projects for which accountability needs to be fixed.
“Considering the public importance of projects and the inconvenience being faced by several agencies, I had raised the matter regarding undue delay in disposal of applications for grant of permission for tree cutting/translocation in case of various projects of CPWD, DMRC, Indian Railways several times during my meetings with you, however the pendency continues to persist,” said the Delhi LG.