Mumbai: Environmental activists wrote letters to Japan PM Shinzo Abe and Survival specialist Bear Grylls pleading to save Aarey forest. Many activists have come together as Save Aarey Activists and have gained a huge support from many people to save Aarey forest of Mumbai. The activists are hoping that the international pressure would persuade the Maharashtra Government to back off Mumbai’s last surviving forest.
The activists also requested Bear Grylls to ask PM Modi to prevent the felling of more than 2700 trees for a Metro 3 depot and in the latest development, they have also sought help from Japan PM Shinzo Abe. Since 57% of Metro 3’s funds have come from a Japanese government agency, the activists have requested Shinzo Abe’s intervention. In the letter to PM Shinzo, Professor A Jadhav of St. Xavier’s College and also the founder of NGO Kaash Foundation, he has requested PM Abe to get Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to tell the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC) in no uncertain terms that Aarey is a no go zone.
Professor A Jadhav wrote that “The project would benefit millions of citizens. However, under the pretext of Maharashtra is following an anti-environment policy. It is arbitrarily and against the opposition of citizens still out to engage in a state sponsored environmental vandalism.” He also added that the authorities are keen on setting up a car shed in Aarey despite the availability of space in Kanjurmarg and Bandra Kurla Complex (BKC). However, MMRC has said that it is not possible due to technical problems and also it will cost and an additional amount of ₹750 crores.
Two weeks ago, Professor Jadhav and his students of St. Xavier’s college wrote to Bear Grylls requesting him to go visit Aarey and lend his support to the conservation movement to save aarey. Bear Grylls was seen in an episode of Man Vs Wild with Prime Minister Narendra Modi which delivered a terrific TRP of 3.6 million in two weeks making it the worlds most trending television event.