In the ongoing drive against commercial activities being carried out from Old Grant Bungalows (OGBs) at the Pune Cantonment,the latest establishment to bite the dust is a nursery,which in 40 years of its existence,had endeared avid gardeners of the city.
Come June 10,and Jagtap Nursery will be closing its operations from 3,Phayre Road,the place where they began 40 years ago as Rams Roses. Over the years,the nursery,started by Ramrao Jagtap and Chandralekha Jagtap,became synonymous with gardening and citizens who needed to create a green space at their homes would invariably pay a visit.
The decision to close down the nursery was taken after a notice was served by the Local Military Authority (LMA) urging the owners to stop commercial activities being carried out from their property,an OGB.
There are over 150 OGBs within the Pune Cantonment. As part of the drive undertaken by the LMA,visits/ notices were also served on several others,like Preet Mandir and Poona Womens Council School earlier.
Yet,as rejuvenation is inherent to Nature,the nursery will not be lost to posterity,but will continue to cater to its patrons,albeit on a different platform. In a statement issued on Thursday,Devendra Jagtap,CEO,Jagtap Nursery,said,The GOC,through the Defence Estate Office,have ordered us to close down as this is a residential property and cannot be used for commercial purposes. We have always been law abiding and are left with no option but to close. We will soon launch an online garden centre. Your purchases will be delivered directly from our farm.
According to the Cantonments Act,2006,commercial activities from within the OGBs are not permitted. Renovation,reconstruction or modification in an old grant property needs prior approval from the LMA and the Defence Estates Office. Talking to Newsline,Anuja Jagtap,GC manager,Jagtap Nursery,said,We received a notice from the DEO in April,giving us three months to clear the sheds and close the activity. However,we got another notice last week,asking us to stop the activities immediately. As a result,we are now shutting shop here. We are looking for alternative places.
The activity,though commercial,was being carried out with good intent. It was not disturbing anyone. In fact,it was helping Nature and environment, she added.
The Defence Estates Officer did not respond to the phone calls. However,talking to The Indian Express earlier,an Army officer had said,We are going by the rulebook. Commercial activities are not permitted out of any government accommodation more so in the old grant bungalows. We plan to continue with the drive.
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