Zoru Bhathena

Brief info

Many know him as Mumbai’s tree warrior. He is the ‘Man who moves court for Mumbai’s Trees’. The 43-year-old had recently challenged an amendment to the Maharashtra (Urban Areas) Protection and Preservation of Trees Act, 1975, which allowed municipal commissioners to allow proposals seeking to cut, remove, and transplant up to 25 trees, without sending the proposal to the concerned Tree Authority. His PIL also compelled the court to order the Tree Authority to nominate an expert member – the body functioned only on the basis of 13 corporators and no environmentalist or arboriculturist – before resuming functioning. He has time and again stood up against the tree felling at the city’s green lung – the Aarey Milk Colony. He has drawn attention to the dismal survival rate of the replanted trees, being done in compensation for the trees cut for the upcoming Metro network.