New Delhi: As heavy rains continued to cripple normal life in Mumbai, senior Congress leader Milind Deora on Tuesday took a dig at Devendra Fadnavis-led Maharashtra government over its plans to cut down mangrove trees to create a high-speed rail corridor.

“Mangroves protect Mumbai from storms, winds, waves & floods. Yet, 54,000 will be razed for the bullet train.
Will the train shift Mumbaikars to Ahmedabad when our city drowns? I urge CMO Maharashtra to urgently intervene,” Deora tweeted.

He also mocked BJP government’s plan to remove mangroves and plant 5 trees in its place saying,”Planting trees across Maharashtra won’t save Mumbai.”

Nearly 54,000 mangroves spread over 13.36 hectares will be affected because of the Mumbai-Ahmedabad high speed rail corridor, commonly called the bullet train project, state transport minister Diwakar Raote had said while replying to a question raised by Shiv Sena legislator Maneesha Kayande in the state Legislative Council.

Meanwhile, receiving the record rainfall, Mumbai was paralysed, with most roads getting clogged and local train services, the financial capitals lifeline, virtually coming to a standstill. Over 20 people lost their lives in rain-related incidents across the city.

The Maharashtra government declared a precautionary public holiday today in Mumbai, with Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis requesting people to stay indoors unless they have absolutely important work outside. The BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) declared a holiday for all schools and colleges, and the state government expanded it to include other parts of coastal Konkan region.