The zone the administration is clearing forest is habitat for spotted dears, says student

Hyderabad University students oppose tree chopping in campus for new road demand clarificationImage credit: Facebook/Ravi Jillapalli
news News Sunday, May 21, 2017 - 12:48

With the rampant deforestation in University of Hyderabad (UoH) campus to lay a road, the UoH students' union on Saturday has written a letter to the administration demanding a clarification on the matter.

The reports suggested that the trees have been cut in order lay a road to connect a new under-construction academic building with rest of the university.

“You are aware of the fact that the rich-biodiversity of our university has already been adversely affected due to large scale deforestation. Now, this new cycle of deforestation will only worsen the situation. Hence, we strongly oppose the cutting down of trees and condemn this anti-environmental act, undertaken by the administration, in strongest possible manner,” the letter by the students' union states, as quoted in the Times of India

Earlier, Ravi Jillapalli, a student wildlife activist, who founded the 'Wild Lens' group on campus, pointed out the deforestation on social media. 

He posted on Facebook, "Anyone who stays in HCU campus knows that the zone where the administration is clearing the forest is habitat for spotted deers. It’s shocking to me, as to how these people could take such extreme steps to clear the huge number of trees without Forest Department's approval. In the name of development, University is doing deforestation on a regular basis.”

"I don’t find any need to make the wildlife shelterless in this scorching summer...I saw a number of spotted deer running around tree logs that were cut off. Last summer, we lost 44 spotted deers due to dog attacks, poaching and dehydration. These animals won't be able to hide and safeguard themselves," he added.

However, when TOI contacted the university engineer KS Prasad, he reportedly said, “We had to finish the work before monsoon begins as we have start classes in the new buildings. Few students try to malign the university by raising such issues. We have not indulged in deforestation but instead conducted afforestation (sic) by planting over one lakh saplings last year out of which 90% are still alive.” 

Meanwhile, to stop the deforestation in the campus, a student from the University, Vaibhav Ramani, has started an online petition at Change.org against the move. 

“This rampant clearing of trees has been a part of the administration's 'development and beautification of the campus'. The campus, in the recent past has also witnessed poachers operating with a free hand with little or no action taken by the administration. These recent incidences of forest clearing have meant a great loss of habitat to animals such as the spotted deer, wild boar etc and numerous species of birds that the campus is home to. This has been a major setback to the university community on campus too,” he wrote in the petition. 

The petition has already gained over 350 supporter online which was started two days ago. 

 

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