Mumbai, Nov. 19 -- A state-appointed contractor has paid a penalty of Rs.1 lakh to the forest department to ensure 4.5 hectares (ha) of mangroves in Uran, which were destroyed owing to construction activities, are restored. The development comes a year after HT had reported about large-scale mangrove destruction in Uran.

The information was revealed last week in a Right to Information (RTI) response from the state forest department on a query filed by Navi Mumbai-based environment group NatConnect. According to the response, the contractor, ITD Cementation India Ltd, appointed by the Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT), has paid the amount for destroying 4,550 mangrove trees at container terminal 4, where the state has proposed a hovercraft...