As many as a thousand protesters joined their hands to form a human chain on Jayamahal road in Bengaluru on Saturday, protesting against the BBMP’s move to axe 112 trees along the road to widen it further.
As the first phase of the proposed steel flyover project between Basaveshwara Circle and Hebbal, the BBMP’s road infrastructure cell has requested the forest cell to grant permission for removal these 112 trees of different species.
The nearly one-kilometre long human chain organized by Citizens of Bengaluru, saw protesters raising slogans such as "Mara kadi Bedi" and "Beke beku, Mara beku.”
In a press statement, Srinivas Alavilli, coordinator for Citizens for Bengaluru pointed out that tree-felling was no way to decongest the roads and that the civic body must instead focus on sustainable multi-mode public transport as an alternative.
"Bengaluru is called garden city because of our trees. That brand is under serious threat and so are our trees and children. No amount of road-widening is going to fix the traffic congestion. It is ridiculous to cut 112 fully grown trees in Jayamahal which represents the kind of Bangalore that we want to preserve. BBMP asked for objections. They got it today! We demand BBMP to acknowledge the mass objection expressed in the form of human chain and immediately cancel the road widening plan. The overwhelming public response to this event in such a short notice makes us feel confident that citizens will fight the battles time and again to protect what is Bengaluru,” Srininvas said.
Calling the BBMP’s move to fell the trees as “mindless murder,” Tara Krishnaswamy of CFB demanded that the civic body “cancel this ill-conceived project.”
The members of CfB, along with the residents of Jayamahal are set to submit the signatures collected during the human chain to the BBMP to place our objection on record in writing.