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  MMRC, activists wage war on Twitter

MMRC, activists wage war on Twitter

Published : Sep 29, 2016, 3:34 am IST
Updated : Sep 29, 2016, 3:34 am IST

Managing director of Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC), Ashwini Bhide, has taken to social networking website Twitter to counter the social media campaign being carried out by green activists who a

A screengrab of one of Ms Bhide’s tweets
 A screengrab of one of Ms Bhide’s tweets

Managing director of Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC), Ashwini Bhide, has taken to social networking website Twitter to counter the social media campaign being carried out by green activists who are opposing building of a car depot at Aarey Colony for Metro 3 (Colaba-Bandra-Seepz).

Ms Bhide, in a series of tweets, has hit out at environmentalists saying that trees are axed every day for several real estate projects and one should not oppose a public transport project for the same reason.

 

“You cannot place your finger where you like and say ‘build a car depot there’. Each project has its own technical requirements. Where were you’ll when so much real estate was constructed in the vicinity of Aarey Colony by cutting trees,” she tweeted.

Ms Bhide was replying to tweets by the Aarey Conservative Group (ACG) which has been opposing the Aarey Colony site for the Metro car depot. Ms Bhide said that the plan to construct the depot at Aarey Colony was being opposed by activists and politicians, who said that it would harm the environment and wildlife in Aarey Colony.

Countering Ms Bhide’s tweets, the ACG replied, “Your perspective is restricted to your project whereas our perspective is the city in totality”. The ACG said that MMRC had ignored other options namely Kanjurmarg, Kalina and Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC) for the metro car depot. Last year, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis had set up a panel to look into alternate options for the car depot.

 

However, these options were rejected by MMRC which cited various technical and practical challenges.

Further taking on the ACG, Ms Bhide said, “We are not wiping out green patches in the core area. The site selected by us, has 70 per cent exotic trees. We are working in the best interest of the city with full devotion and commitment and are open to constructive suggestions.”

MMRC has promised to replant trees that will be axed for construction of the car depot. It is also using Twitter actively to voice its opinions on the Metro 3 corridor.

Political parties and environmentalists have been opposing Aarey Colony as site for the car depot, saying that it will lead to the destruction of greenery and wildlife. In October last year, an expert committee constituted by Mr Fadnavis gave alternatives that were rejected by MMRC, which said the same were not feasible. The plan has also been challenged by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) where the case is ongoing.