Women's week: Her fight for a fallen tree kicks up a storm
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Women's week: Her fight for a fallen tree kicks up a storm

The neem tree Monica Singh had planted when she was 5 years old was her friend. But when that very tree was cut down after a complaint from another resident, she is determined to get answers.

Women's week: Her fight for a fallen tree kicks up a storm

Thirty years ago, Monica Singh, then a 5-year-old girl, planted a neem tree near her residence, A-42 in Noida, Sector 21. Last month, February 7 to be precise, when Singh returned home from Singapore, where she lives and works, she was in for a shock.

Her beloved tree, which she nurtured for many years, had been cut down.

But she wasn't one to take it lying down. Bent on taking those responsible to task, she refuses to rest till she gets answers. 

When she raised the issue with the RWA, Ajay Goyal, Secretary of the Sector 21 RWA, said the tree was felled after Anil Bharadwaj, who stays on the ground floor (A-41) of Singh's building, complained that the roots were damaging the granite flooring of his house. 

Bharadwaj, on his part, swore he had taken written permission from the RWA and the Forest Department to cut down the tree. He added that a sapling had been planted in place of the neem tree and another in the garden area of the sector. 

But Singh refuses to buy these explanations. "The two saplings have been planted only because I've complained to the higher authorities," she says.

When City Spidey checked with Shiv Tyagi, a forest guard in Noida, he was evasive. He said he had only advised pruning and not uprooting of the tree.

Meanwhile, District Forest Officer KK Singh sang a conciliatory tune. He said several saplings had been planted to make up for the felling of the 30-year-old neem tree, and soon a healthy tree would thrive where it once stood.

Singh isn't amused, even as she contemplates her next move.