Green Warriors Speak Out: Dental College Professors Champion PIL Against Tree Mutilation

In a groundbreaking move, the State High Court has intervened to address the distressing state of trees, victimized by a rampant surge in the use of nails and wires, particularly in Shimla city. The bench, headed by Chief Justice MS Ramachandra Rao and Justice Jyotsna Rewal Dua, has summoned responses from all District Magistrates, aiming to curtail the escalating tree atrocities that have gripped the region.

The impetus for the High Court’s intervention stems from a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) initiated by environmental advocates and professors from Dental College Sundernagar, namely Dr. Dharmesh Sharma, Dr. Ashish Sharma, Dr. Malvika, and Dr. Sakshi Supehiya. Their plea, converted into a PIL, highlights the dire consequences of affixing hoardings to trees using sharp nails and entangling them with various wires. The litigants argue that these egregious acts not only mar the aesthetic beauty of Shimla but also pose a severe threat to the local ecosystem.

The litigants, in an email addressed to the High Court, draw attention to the widespread practice of nailing and hanging hoardings on trees, particularly prevalent in Shimla city. This trend has not only become an eyesore but also a source of anguish for the environment. The concrete and nails used to secure hoardings inflict lasting damage on the trees, rendering them vulnerable to diseases and causing irreparable harm to the delicate ecosystem they support.

The ecological consequences of these actions extend beyond the visual impact, affecting the flora and fauna dependent on these trees. Birds, attempting to build nests on these compromised trees, often find themselves ensnared in the wires, leading to injuries and disruption of their natural habitats.

The situation in most of the state, including Shimla city paints a grim picture of environmental neglect, with banners hanging haphazardly on trees and wires entwined around their branches, becoming an unfortunate norm. The charm of the picturesque city is increasingly overshadowed by the unsightly sight of hoardings, many secured with sharp nails, adorning the once-pristine trees. The use of wires to affix these banners not only compromises the structural integrity of the trees but also poses a tangible danger to the avian inhabitants of the area.

The High Court, taking cognizance of these specific concerns, has broadened its scope to include the tangled wires and banners as part of the tree atrocities under scrutiny. The court’s decision to summon responses from all District Magistrates underscores the severity of the issue, emphasizing the need for immediate action to curb this destructive trend. As forests of the state grapple with the juxtaposition of urban development and environmental conservation, the High Court’s intervention becomes crucial in ensuring that the city’s natural beauty is preserved for generations to come. The battle against tree atrocities now encompasses not only the physical harm inflicted on the trees but also the visual degradation caused by banners and wires, making it a comprehensive effort to safeguard the State’s ecological equilibrium.