SBF - Voice of India

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Saturday, 3 January, 2009

All in a night's work!

Every day, when I wake up there has always been a group of special friends to greet me regardless of the climate, temperature or time.

For 21 years I have seen them grow and they have seen me grow, play and throw tantrums. These special friends are the trees that surround my building. Every tree occupies a unique position in my heart. They are the shelters for many birds and squirrels which I wouldn't have seen and understood so closely had it not been for the trees. It is much more than reading about them in books or in a Zoo(No guarantee you can see them in Mumbai Zoo!). I still remember and cherish the childhood adventures of looking for hours at the birds' nests for sign of life and I can still feel the ecstasy of seeing hungry mouths competing for food. Binoculars and Patience were my only tools but the reward was nothing less than a treasure.

Apart from these, just imagine I have never thought of putting up a curtain in my room. Never needed to! The trees provided enough cover for privacy and dust and dirt almost never existed. The cover was so thick that a Full Monty would never be caught!

Past 1 year, the landscape and mindset of the people has changed drastically. Suddenly, many trees have started collapsing and withering; some naturally others due to the ulterior motives of many greedy men! Land prices have sky rocketed and all lands are now sitting gold mines. Redevelopment and demolishing are the new mantras and quick money is in every ones mind. The land opposite my house is being redeveloped and the former school is making way for a new humongous Tower Complex.

At night, I hear sounds of iron hitting wood and next morning I find a friend of mine is no more. I have silently cried at the loss of my friends and mourned with the many birds over the loss. Birds have shifted houses and the chirping has mellowed. Squirrels find this invasion threatening and have been forced out of their natural habitat. Many days I see them dead on road mauled by stray dogs while others try to salvage something from the nearby apartments. Today, many of my friends have left for heavenly abode while many wait for their turn. The landscape has changed, everybody is suffering from dust related illness and respiratory ailments have sky rocketed.

Will this stop ? Can anyone stop the muscle men of Builders , those who are infamous for their underworld and police nexus ?

One more tree has almost perished by their carelessness and recklessness.
Their wish to provide nets at the building perimeter to ensure safety to neighborhood has left the tree brutally hacked!
Attempt 1 : The nets got tangled with the tree branch (left one) and a dumper who didn't see the nets pulled along the nets thereby breaking the left branch which finally had to be cut to prevent it blocking the road.
Attempt 2 : Yesterday, the whole day there was high activity around the tree with the workers beaming with high motivation to finish netting. Today morning, I find the other branch mortally cut and the tree reduced to a tiny-winy shrub!

The Rightmost tree near the Right Gate Lamp. It has two branches emerging close to ground (left and right branches)

The Left Branch has been hacked while Right Branch has been cut and reduced

Left Branch after hacking has been covered up

All for erecting a net frame? This must be seen as tree hacking for billboardsFrom SBF - Voice of India
All in a night's work!
When and where will they stop ?

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