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Senior citizens miraculously escape as tree falls, crushes taxi

In Featured, Mumbai, Rajiv K Bajaj
July 27, 2017
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The monsoons have unquestionably arrived in Mumbai and with the heavy showers come calamities. Like road–traffic accidents due to pothole ridden roads, there have been several reports of other catastrophies such as walls collapsing and grievously injuring people, with some dying due to their injuries. But in a new twist, it seems, the trees around Mumbai city are unable to stand tall against the incessant downpour.
In another such tragic incident around the city, two senior citizens were injured as a tree crashed on the kaali-peeli taxi they were in, as per reports by the Times of India. The incident occurred at 11.30am in Parel’s GD Ambedkar Marg, Bhoiwada. The two injured, Manohar Kocharekar (75) and Bindyavasini Mishra (65), were rushed to KEM hospital where doctors assessed their injuries and said that the two senior citizens were not seriously injured. But if one were to take a look at the pulverized taxi, they’d realize how incredibly lucky the couple was.
The incident comes a day after an ex-Doordarshan anchor, Kanchan Nath (58), was crushed by a falling coconut tree. The incident sent shock-waves through Mumbaikars who alleged that the BMC is not doing enough to keep a check on the health of trees, especially during the monsoons. Incidentally, since 2012, sixteen people have died due to tree crashes and 123 have been injured due to the same reasons.
People in Mumbai worried that falling trees will claim more victims if the BMC doesn’t pull up its socks and address this issue. As per statistics, nine people, in Mumbai alone, have died due to trees falling since 2015. In a statement to the Times of India, Activist Rajkumar Sharma, president, Chembur Diamond Garden Residents’ Forum, said, “We have been raising the issue of dangerous trees at advanced locality management (ALM) meetings. Trees need to be checked properly periodically. Will any civic official be held responsible for the tree fall that killed Kanchan Nath? There is an urgent need for civic accountability.”
In response, Abhijit Chavan, a former nominated member of the BMC’s tree authority committee, said, “Every ward has its own junior tree officer who works at the grassroots level. He should be aware when a tree is to be trimmed or is in a dangerous condition so that such accidents can be avoided.”