Navi Mumbai Draft Development Plan Upsets Greens with Proposal to Develop ‘Flamingo Lake’ Area, ET RealEstate

March 2, 2024

<p>Representative Image</p>
Representative Image

NAVI MUMBAI: Environmentalists are upset with Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation’s (NMMC) new draft Development Plan (DP) which has marked the DPS lake area in Seawoods, a popular birding site, in sectors 52 and 52A as open for residential/commercial development.

While NMMC has clarified that it is a draft DP and not the final report, and that they have only included the updated Cidco nodal plan, greens opine that the ‘flamingo lake’ area should have been reserved as a no-development zone.

Activist B N Kumar of NatConnect Foundation told TOI: “’We are disturbed and worried by the new draft DP… Hundreds of migratory wetland birds, like flamingos, come to this waterbody spread over 33 acres…If buildings or towers come up here, the lake will be destroyed and flamingos will stop coming here.”

RTI activist Anarjit Chauhan and environmentalist D Stalin of Vanashakti NGO said it’s “irresponsible” on part of NMMC to blindly follow Cidco nodal plan and allow development on this birding site. “This will be legally challenged by activists,” warned Stalin. Chauhan claimed that many mangrove and wetland sites along the Nerul-Seawoods coastline are being wiped out by debris dumping or burning them to sell the land as ‘high-value’ real estate. “Even forest officials do not bother to secure these sites,” he alleged. Sunil Agarwal of Save Navi Mumbai Environment group said even 12 years after locals fought a legal battle against govt agencies to protect DPS lake, they are still struggling to safeguard the waterbody, wetlands and mangroves.NMMC chief Rajesh Narvekar, however, said: “DPS lake was not notified earlier [as wetland[. But marking this area for residential development, it does not mean that we will start issuing commencement certificates for buildings tomorrow. The draft DP will go to govt for further scrutiny; environmentalists can send their opinions and objections to govt in this regard.”

Assistant town planner S Kekan said: “NMMC has issued a fresh draft DP after 33 years, but some citizens are misunderstanding the case of the waterbody to create confusion. This draft will be checked by the urban development department. So, if there are any errors or problems… they can be rectified at that level…NMMC will also issue a fresh statement to clear any misunderstandings…”

  • Published On Mar 2, 2024 at 09:20 AM IST

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