Hyderabad: Telangana Forest Department has fined a vehicle showroom in Banjara Hills Rs 104,160 for illegally felling five trees that were blocking the view of the showroom. The Pride Honda showroom cut the trees on a Sunday morning, reportedly between 5 am and 7 am.

The Twitter handle of Citizens of Hyderabad, which works towards protecting the environment, took to the microblogging site to address the issue. They shared pictures of the chopped trees, and within two days, the matter was taken up by concerned officials.

V Krishna, Deputy Conservator of Forests, tweeted a photo of the challan issued to the owner of the showroom.

The citizens said that they are happy that some action has been taken, but they thought the fine amount for cutting five trees is very less. The Citizens of Hyderabad, in its tweet, said, “Thank you Sir. It breaks our heart to know that the price of illegally cutting 5 trees is so low & so easily forgiven. Shame on forest laws to undervalue the price of life giving trees. We aren’t over reacting if you consider the price we are paying because of such complacency!! (sic)”

Kajal Maheshwari, an environmental activist, told NewsMeter, “The better compensation would have been planting ten times the number of trees cut. They should also submit six months of progress report to the forest department for the next ten years until the 50 trees become strong.”

She added that the Pride Honda showroom owners should plant some trees as a part of their civic responsibility.

Aiswarya Sriram

Aiswarya Sriram is a budding multimedia journalist and is currently working for NewsMeter as a "Factcheck Freelancer". A graduate from Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media (IIJNM) Bangalore, Aiswarya has earlier worked with The Logical Indian and has interned with Republic TV. Aiswarya, a Tamilian who was born and brought up in Mumbai, loves to do rural reporting. She has visited Byadgi Taluk of Karnataka, to write about the issues faced by chilli factory workers there, earlier in 2019. A craft enthusiast, Aiswarya also does quilling, painting and glass work. On her off-days, she loves to read crime-thrillers and watch anime. She primarily reports on civic issues, GHMC, human-interesting features, and fact-checking video stories.

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