Coastal road will alter Mumbai coastline: NCP

THE CM maintains that there will be no violation of environmental norms

Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan, who has been pushing for the Rs 8,000-crore coastal road project between Colaba and Kandivali, has been receiving warnings from senior ministers of NCP, saying the project is likely to alter the picturesque seashore, which is the main tourist attraction of Mumbai.

Though Chavan maintains that there will be no violation of environmental rules, Ministry of Tourism claims that the project, covering 35.6 km, will adversely affect the prominent 'chowpatties'.

Minister for tourism and senior NCP leader Chhagan Bhujbal said, "The coastal road will completely alter the face of Mumbai seashore. No matter what care we take, one cannot deny that Mumbai's seashore will not be the same."

Minister for Public Works (Public Undertakeings) Jaidutt Kshirsagar had urged the government to undertake extension of the Bandra-Worli sea link up to Nariman Point instead of focussing of coastal road. However, Chavan believes that the coastal road is more economic and will address the problem of traffic better.

The civic committee working on the project believes the project will also take into account landscape while laying out the road along the city coast. While the Centre has given its approval to the project, details regarding environmental issues have to be worked out.

NGOs opposing the project are mobilsing the support of residents, citing threat to mangroves.

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