National Politics

“Aarey Needs To Be Protected”; Protests Continue In Mumbai For Second Consecutive Sunday

Aarey protest

Mumbai: In Maharashtra’s Mumbai, Aarey residents and environmentalists seem to be not giving up without a fight, no matter what the weather conditions are.

On Sunday Aarey residents and Envorimentalist stood strong for the cause of saving the forest. Despite heavy rains, the energy and spirits were high.

This was the second consecutive Sunday after the agitation resumed. The decision of the newly formed Shinde-Fadnavis government to reverse the Metro Car shed location from Kanjurmarg to Aarey triggered the protestors to get back on the streets after a three-year break.

The peaceful protest was scheduled at 11:00 AM. However, people started gathering half an hour prior to the scheduled time.


The police were in large numbers with huge barricading and ready in their positions directing the protestors and media persons to not cross the barricading.

During a candid chat with an HW reporter, one of the protestors(who did not wish to be named), informed us about a WhatsApp group named Aarey Forest preservation through which they connect. People from all walks of life are part of the group, he said.

They also informed that during the 2019 movement, they were also detained and they shared the Jail with Shiv Sena MP Priyanka Chaturvedi.

As soon as the clock turned at 11:00 AM, the protestors started with loud sloganeering. Shouts of “Hala Bol” (raise your voice) were engulfed the silent forest area.

Aarey protest

An elderly man (65-70 years old ), who was seen as one of the active protestors leading from the front, spoke to HW News on why he joined the movement.

When asked about what he does for a living, he said he has retired from service and he joined the protest because of his age-old connection with the forest, which started back in his childhood when his parents took him for an outing to Chota Kashmir (A picnic spot in Aarey).

DYFI(Democratic Youth Federation of India ) members were also seen playing Dafli and giving a rhythmic touch to the slogans.

Aarey protest

Although rains continued all this while, protestors were unmoved and did not show any hesitation in continuing their agitation.

Former Maharastra Environment Aditya Thackeray also showed up at the protest. “Aarey is a unique forest within our city. Uddhav Thackeray ji declared 808 acres of Aarey as Forest and the car shed must move out. Our human greed and lack of compassion cannot be allowed to destroy biodiversity in our city, “Mr. Thackeray said.

However, Mr. Thackeray spent very little time on the site.

HW News also had an interaction with Amrita Bhattacharjee, who is one of the petitioners in the case against moving the carshed to Aaarey.

Responding to the claims of protesters being fake, she said the CM and DY CM should come on the ground and meet with the environmentalist so they would come to know that they really care for the forest and are not affiliated with any political party.

“This area is the catchment area of Mitthi river. If this area gets destroyed, more rainwater will get discharged into the river, which will further create flooding in the downstream areas and this is why this area has to be protected,” the protester said replying on why Aarey is important.

Responding to the cost problems of shifting the car shed the petitioner said, “Last year, BMC commissioner had said Colaba, Nerimenpoint, Mantralya area will go underwater by 2050, this metro car deport is built at cost of 26-27 thousand crore which will probably go under water in another 20-25 years. So probably commuters will have to do scuba diving to enter the station and catch a train.”

Bhattacharjee further said the metro will reduce carbon footprints but can never produce oxygen like the Aarey produces.

AIDWA (All India Democratic Women’s Association) members dressed as warkari (Devotees of lord vithal) were present at the protest shouting slogans while playing clappers. The day also marked the Aashadhi Ekadashi (An auspicious day for the devotees of lord Vithal).

They shouted slogans of Vithala Yana Buddhi De. (Give brains to them lord Vithal)

HW News also spoke to a member of the “Right to recall party”.

The young activist informed that the party has proposed a law to allow the recalling of an act passed by the government by filing an application with the Talathi office and that more than 50 percent of the population demanded repealing of the act will have to be rolled back.

One of the protesters had come all the way from Colaba to support the cause. The 18-year-old said it’s his duty as a Mumbaikar to do his part.

HW News has been informed that the protest is all set to resume next Sunday.

Watch the detailed story at HW News English –

HW News Hindi –






















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