Expansion of Virar Dahanu railway to begin
RAILWAYS & METRO RAIL

Expansion of Virar Dahanu railway to begin

The Mumbai Railway Vikas Corporation's (MRVC) plans to increase railway line capacity between Virar and Dahanu on the western line have not yet taken off, despite receiving Stage 1 (in principle) forest clearance (FC) in February 2022 since the Bombay High Court is yet to grant permission for the project to clear approximately 24.5 hectares of mangroves in Palghar district. In the matter, a writ petition is still pending before the HC.

However, the ministry of environment, forests, and climate change's regional empowered committee (REC) has permitted MRVC to begin work on two hectares of the railway line outside of the protected mangrove patches while recommending Stage II clearance, the final level of FC required for any project. Officials claim that the HC's pending permission is all that stands in the way of the construction of the project, which is scheduled to be finished by 2025, now that the Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority has granted the project CRZ clearance in November 2022.

The third and fourth railway lines will be laid parallel to the existing double line corridor for approximately 63 km between Virar and Dahanu as part of Phase III of the Mumbai Urban Transport Project. According to official records, the project will result in the removal of 25,438 trees, including 24,302 mangroves. Compensatory forestation has been proposed for 54 hectares of degraded land in three Palghar villages nearby to make up for the loss. Within one year of receiving Stage II clearance, a total of 200 trees will be transplanted from the two or three hectares of land outside the mangrove area, where work will be done without the HC's approval.

The Mumbai Railway Vikas Corporation's (MRVC) plans to increase railway line capacity between Virar and Dahanu on the western line have not yet taken off, despite receiving Stage 1 (in principle) forest clearance (FC) in February 2022 since the Bombay High Court is yet to grant permission for the project to clear approximately 24.5 hectares of mangroves in Palghar district. In the matter, a writ petition is still pending before the HC. However, the ministry of environment, forests, and climate change's regional empowered committee (REC) has permitted MRVC to begin work on two hectares of the railway line outside of the protected mangrove patches while recommending Stage II clearance, the final level of FC required for any project. Officials claim that the HC's pending permission is all that stands in the way of the construction of the project, which is scheduled to be finished by 2025, now that the Maharashtra Coastal Zone Management Authority has granted the project CRZ clearance in November 2022. The third and fourth railway lines will be laid parallel to the existing double line corridor for approximately 63 km between Virar and Dahanu as part of Phase III of the Mumbai Urban Transport Project. According to official records, the project will result in the removal of 25,438 trees, including 24,302 mangroves. Compensatory forestation has been proposed for 54 hectares of degraded land in three Palghar villages nearby to make up for the loss. Within one year of receiving Stage II clearance, a total of 200 trees will be transplanted from the two or three hectares of land outside the mangrove area, where work will be done without the HC's approval.

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