The State Mangrove Cell has started the tender process for the 10-foot compound wall to be built around the mangroves across the city. The move is expected to save mangroves from encroachment and incidents of garbage burning.
The department will be initially floating a tender of Rs 13 crore for the erection of the compound wall. The funds for the compound wall will be provided by the state government and The Mangrove Foundation.
The State Mangrove Cell has demolished about 6,000 hutments and shanties that have illegally encroached into the mangrove sites, spread across 5,800 hectare of the city since 2014. Makarand Ghodke, assistant conservator of forest (ACF), State Mangrove Cell, said, “After several demolitions, the illegal hutments keep coming back. So we have decided to cordon off the mangroves of Mumbai and Navi Mumbai with a 10-foot wall. We will also be installing CCTV cameras in the area so as to keep vigilance over incidents of garbage burning at the sites.”
While environmentalists have raised concerns over the construction of concrete walls along the wetland area, the Mangrove Cell has stated that the lower panels of the compound wall will have provision for the free flow of tidal water. “We will not be doing any construction inside the wetland, and will ensure to leave the lower area to prevent any kind of restriction in the tidal water,” added Mr Ghodke.
The project will be started on mangrove areas from western and eastern belt from Manori-Gorai and will continue all the way to Vashi area.