Around 1,471 hectares of mangroves on government land in Navi Mumbai have been notified as “reserved forests”. This comes nearly nine months after the state’s decision to notify all mangroves on public land in the state as “reserved forests”.
“With this notification, only around 4,478 hectares in Dahanu division of Thane district are left to be notified as “reserved forests”,” said N Vasudevan, chief conservator of forests, mangrove cell.
These mangroves in Navi Mumbai were notified as “protected forests” in 2008 as per a 2005 High Court directive to map and notify mangroves. While limited human activity is permitted in “protected forest” areas, once a forest settlement officer settles claims of all inhabitants in “reserved forests”, all human activity is strictly prohibited.
In June last year, the state decided to notify all mangroves on government land as reserved forests’. Accordingly, the mangrove cell had sent the proposal seeking notification of these mangroves to the Thane collector P Velrasu’s office “two months ago”, said Vasudevan.