In May 2021, the Brahmagiri mountain range (In Sahyadri, also known as Western Ghats) in Nashik was devastated by a private developer’s development project. The 700 residents of the mountaintop town of Suplichi Met live in constant danger of landslides as a result of the catastrophe.
During this time, they visited local municipal officials and forest officers, but their demands were received with indifference and remained ignored. The destruction came to a halt after the Maharashtra Times, a leading newspaper, and the Brahmagiri Action Committee banded together to address the problem and strongly battled it. However, the majority of the harm had already been done.
They also observed that the incident in the Sahyadri range was not unique. The entire mountain range is home to hundreds of illicit and dangerous mining, excavation, and building enterprises.
The United Nations has added the Sahyadri mountain range, popularly known as the Western Ghats, a mountain chain with forests older than those in the Himalayan range, to its list of world historic sites. It is one of the eight “hottest hotspots” of biological diversity on the planet.
The Sahyadri mountain range is also historically significant, thanks to the hundreds of forts and rich cultural heritage of its indigenous tribes. But instead of preserving this site of monumental importance rich with biodiversity, it is being continuously destroyed for farmhouses, industry, mining and other development projects. The Western Ghats are home to at least 325 globally threatened (IUCN Red Data List) species. The Western Ghats are home to 229 plant species, 31 animal species, 15 bird species, 43 amphibian species, 5 reptile species, and 1 fish species, all of which are internationally threatened.
To preserve this site we demand:
- No excavation, no mining and no construction in the Sahyadri mountain range
- Putting a stop to all illegal projects in the Sahyadri mountain range and imposition of heavy fines and punishment on defaulters.
- Demarcation of the Sahyadri Mountain Range and strict prohibition of development in specific non-development zones.