To most of us, the sound of a tree being cut is the most horrible sound on Earth.
Before this group was formed, a majority of us simply shed tears when we saw a tree being cut and decried our helplessness.
But after now standing up to the tree fellers quite a number of times now, we have now realized what everyone keeps on saying "The Power of One"
It is beyond doubt that ONE SINGLE PERSON, even you alone, is enough to stop, even if temporarily, a tree being cut. All that is required is confidence. Once you have done it, you will wonder,
as we do now, so remorsefully, why did we not do it earlier!
This is what you MUST do if you see a tree being cut.
All this will save the life of a tree, at least for some time if not forever.
- Please remember, it is ILLEGAL to cut any tree, even with permission, after sunset and before dawn. Even for cutting branches you need written permission.
- Ring up your friends or us ( Tree helpline: 9012279590) and tell them to come to the location immediately.
- Do NOT wait for anyone to come. It may be too late before help arrives.
- Walk up confidently to the people and yell at them to Stop. Make sure they stop by yelling again if required, though, experience shows one shout is more than enough.
- Ask for the contractor. Each group of people who try and cut a tree are invariably hired by a contractor, so ask for him.
- Ask the Contractor to see the written permission for the tree felling. It is legally a must for all contractors who are felling trees to have with them in original written permission from the District Forest Officer which specifies the tree which is being cut. Check for the expiry date and the specified location. Each permission has a "cut before" date, if that has expired the peron has to get a new permission. Look for it. If the location does not match, point it out. If they still don't agree, call the Police.
- If he does not have the permission, tell him to stop otherwise you will call the Police.
- If everything is OK, you still have the legal right to object to the permission. Tell him you have objections to it and you will get this permission cancelled by talking to the DFO. Impress upon him to leave immediately and contact his PWD Officer (such contractors are under a Public Work Department Officer) as the public here is having objections to this tree felling. Hopefully some support may have reached for you by then, but even if no one reaches, sound firm and clear. Most of the times they will leave. If a PWD person comes, repeat the same thing and tell him you will file an objection tomorrow with the DFO.
- Talk to shopkeepers nearby, people owning stalls, paan wallahs etc and talk about the reasons why trees should not be cut.
- If a number of trees are to be cut, then it is usually done by the Forest Development Corporation (which has nothing to do with Forest Department). The Forest Corporation has a list of trees to be felled which is called "Chappan". The list details the type of tree and the reason for felling it. Number on the chappan tally with the number etched on the tree. Even here, the permission is given by the DFO and is time bound. Ask for the DFO permission, not the chappan, which is an internal Forest Corporation document. Also check the reason mentioned, often healthy trees are shown as "diseased" or dead trees. If you find this to be the case, point it out, protest and call us or the DFO up.
Please note: It is the official policy of this group not to interfere in private properties. Cutting of trees by private people is a matter for the Police. If you strongly feel that tree felling in private land is illegal and you would want to intervene, call the Police.