Pune: Koregaon Park Resident Demands To Declare Banyan Trees To Be As Protected Natural Heritage And Take Steps For Conservation

Pune: Koregaon Park Resident Demands To Declare Banyan Trees To Be As Protected Natural Heritage And Take Steps For Conservation

Pune: Koregaon Park Resident Demands To Declare Banyan Trees To Be As Protected Natural Heritage And Take Steps For Conservation

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Dhairyasheel Vandekar, an active resident of the area have written a letter on the June 1, 2024 to Chief Minister of Maharashtra Eknath Shinde with copies to Dy. CM & Pune Guardian Minister Ajit Pawar, Dy. CM Devendra Fadnavis and PMC Commissioner and have requested to declare the diminishing number of banyan trees in Koregaon Park, Pune as protected natural heritage and take urgent steps for their conservation. 

In his letter, he stated, “I am writing to bring to your attention the iconic Banyan trees in Koregaon Park, Pune, which have been a natural wonder and a symbol of our rich cultural heritage for generations. These majestic trees, with their sprawling canopies and twisted branches, have been a source of inspiration, shade, and solace for countless commuters, citizens and visitors alike. In view of their significance, I respectfully request you to consider declaring these Banyan trees in Koregaon Park as Pune city’s Natural Heritage, thereby ensuring their protection, conservation, and maintenance for the future generations. This declaration would not only recognize the cultural and ecological importance of these trees but also make the state government responsible to take necessary measures for their upkeep and preservation.” 

This will result in following benefits for the protection and conservation of these trees:  Regular pruning and maintenance and beautification to ensure the health and longevity of the  trees; 

 Protection from damage or harm caused by human activities or natural elements;  Installation of information boards and signage to raise awareness about the significance of these trees; 

 Inclusion in state-sponsored tourism initiatives to showcase the natural beauty of the city; 

 Prohibit felling by Pune Municipal Corporation or other public and private entitie. 

Furthermore, I request that the Pune Municipal Commissioner be directed to: 

 Carry out regular audits and take necessary actions to ensure the safety and well-being of these trees; 

 Conduct proper surveillance and implement measures to prevent any human activities that harm or damage to the trees;  Collaborate with stakeholders, local citizen group, NGOs to develop a comprehensive conservation plan for the trees; I believe that this declaration and the subsequent actions would not only be a fitting tribute to our city’s natural and cultural heritage but also contribute to the ecological and environmental wellbeing of the city. 

As you may kindly be aware, KP has turned into a heat island recording highest temperatures in the city mainly because of the green cover of banyan and other trees felled for RFD, NM road widening etc. 

While the PMC Commissioner has forwarded the matter to the Tree Authority, I have not yet received any confirmation on action taken by CM & 2 Dy. CMs. I will also be taking up this issue with Pune MP & newly inducted Central Minister Murlidhar Mohol.