Hun­dreds of Years Old Trees Saved and Re­plant­ed in In­dia

Due to pow­er­ful winds and light show­ers ear­li­er this week, 350- to 400-year-old Neem and Peepal trees at the Ukkadam Lak­sh­mi­narashimar Tem­ple in Coim­bat­ore, In­dia were up­root­ed. But thanks to a suc­cess­ful at­tempt by lo­cals and gov­ern­ment au­thor­i­ties the an­cient trees have been re­plant­ed and live to see an­oth­er day.

The tree’s re­cov­ery is cred­it­ed to mem­bers of Siruthuli, — an NGO based in Coim­bat­ore, In­dia which works to re­ju­ve­nate the wa­ter sources in the city of Coim­bat­ore —  the For­est De­part­ment, a large num­ber of devo­tees and Tirupur Ex­porters As­so­ci­a­tion — Ex­porters of cot­ton knitwear.

Up­root­ing of the tree is in part be­cause of some con­struc­tion work around the tree be­fore the wind­storm in which work­ers care­less­ly cut some roots of the tree, desta­bi­liz­ing it and mak­ing is sus­cep­ti­ble to the gusty weath­er. Tem­ple au­thor­i­ties were in­volved in con­struct­ing a puc­ca con­crete struc­ture i.e., sanc­tum sanc­to­rum for the Vinayakar un­der the Peepal and Neem trees.

The cen­turies-old trees fell caus­ing dam­age not on­ly to them­selves but sur­round­ing shops and a few ve­hi­cles. Up­on ex­am­i­na­tion, Siruthuli re­al­ized that the trees could be saved and ap­proached the Con­ser­va­tor of Forests in Coim­bat­ore, Cir­cle I. An­wardeen, who in turn asked Dis­trict For­est Of­fi­cer A. Periyasamy to send in a team led by Range Of­fi­cers C. Di­neshku­mar and M. Senthilku­mar for in­spec­tion and re­cov­ery.

Man­ag­ing trustee of Siruthuli, Ms. Vanitha Mo­han, gave The Hin­du de­tails on the re-plan­ta­tion of the trees and the col­lec­tive ef­forts of lo­cal bod­ies that brought the trees stand­ing tall once more.

It took 30-odd hours to save the trees with the help of  two cranes, an earth mover, and 18 work­ers pressed in­to ser­vice. The devo­tees per­sist­ed in their re­cov­ery of their beloved tree with much en­thu­si­asm dur­ing the long and dif­fi­cult hours.

Lo­cals now hope that the en­su­ing Mon­soon sea­son will bring life back once more to the shred­ded branch­es in the rainy weath­er.