In the second demolition drive after the monsoon, the mangrove cell razed 108 hutments at Mandala in Mankhurd on Tuesday. In the fifth demolition drive of the year, the cell cleared about five hectares of reserve mangrove forest land. “We cleared all the hutments today. We are now digging channels there to allow the flow of tidal waters. Once the salinity of the land reduces, mangroves should begin growing themselves. If they do not, we will plant some saplings,” said Makarand Ghodke, Assistant Conservator of Forest (ACF), Mangrove Cell.
The drive was conducted with five officers, 18 forest guards and 25 policemen. “We had earlier sent them a notice regarding the demolition and two days back we made announcements asking people to vacate their houses,” added Ghodke. The cell will be taking up more drives in the coming days.