Tree cutting, trimming and pruning laws in Mumbai

This article provides information on the laws for Cutting, Pruning, Trimming, removing of trees in Mumbai and how to prevent illegal cutting of trees.

Which law governs tree cutting and pruning in Mumbai?

Mumbai Municipal Corporation Act

s 383. Removal and trimming of trees, shrubs and hedges.

(1) If, in the opinion of the Commissioner,—
(a) any hedge is at any time insufficiently cut or trimmed, or over-grown, with prickly-pear or other rank vegetation; or
(b) any tree or shrub has fallen or is likely to fall, to the danger of public safety, or over-hangs or obstructs any street to the inconvenience or danger of passengers therein;
the Commissioner may, by written notice, require the owner or occupier of the land on which such hedge, tree or shrub is or has been growing—
(c) to cut down such hedge to a height not exceeding four feet and to a width, not exceeding three feet, and to remove any such prickly-pear or other rank vegetation therefrom; or
(d) to remove, cut, lop or trim such tree or shrub, as the case may be.

(2) In any case falling under clause (b), the Commissioner may, if for the public safety it shall appear to him necessary so to do, cause any tree or shrub to be removed, cut, lopped or trimmed, without previously giving the said owner ‘or occupier notice as aforesaid, and the expenses thereof shall, nevertheless, be paid by the owner or occupier.

Can the BMC / MCGM cut or prune trees on the premises of a Private Society or Owner?

Not Directly.


The BMC is not responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of trees on private premises.

However, under the BMC Act 1881, they cannot prune trees on private premises, but can survey the premises and order the owners to trim them if:

  • any tree or shrub has fallen or is likely to fall, or
  • is a danger to public safety, or
  • over-hangs or obstructs any street to the inconvenience or danger of passengers

In case of grave danger, the BMC may cut or trim the tree without giving any notice to the owner of the premises and charge the owner, the cost of cutting the trees.

Who can apply for a tree to be cut or pruned?

What is the meaning of pruning or trimming?

How should you apply to cut a tree or the branches of a tree? What is the procedure?

Documents required:

  1. Application form duly filled & signed by the Applicant.
  2. Location Map of the area marked with the tree(s)
  3. Serial No. Of Tree(s) to be Cut.
  4. Photograph(s) of the Tree(s)
  5. Registration Copy if Applied Online.

Where can you complain about a fallen tree in Mumbai?

Dial the MCGM Disaster Management Helpline at 1916 or if it is an imminent danger to public, call the Fire Brigade at 101.


12 thoughts on “Tree cutting, trimming and pruning laws in Mumbai”

  1. What are the rules for society, when they indirectly kill the trees, by suffocating its root system by pouring cement concrete at its base. Uncontrolled tiling and concreting also causes flooding during monsoon. Are their any rules for cementing every stretch of ground.

  2. To,
    Municipal Commissioner Shri. Ajoy Mehta.
    Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai,
    Municipal Head Office,
    Mahapalika Marg,
    Mumbai-400 001.
    Tel: 0091-22-22620525.

    Complain is for P-North ward.

    Shri. Ajoy Mehta,

    There is construction work going on in the name of “Horizon Developers” at road no. 4, liberty garden, malad (w), mumbai. 400064 and this is to inform the BMC officials that there were 4, fully grown coconut trees on the same plot, age more that 28 years and 1 mango tree on the same plot, age more that 28 years and some other fully grown green trees age more than 20 years and all the trees were numbered by the BMC at one point of time and the BMC must have records for all the numbered trees at the same plot, but when the development work started at this site, all the trees were made to dried up with the help of chemicals and all the trees have been chopped down before the construction work started by this developer with the help of some BMC officials of P-North ward.

    I request the BMC officials to investigate about the same and issue notice to the developer under the BMC’s Tree Act. All the trees which have been chopped down were numbered by BMC P-North ward and I would like to know how did the developer cut all the trees without the permission of BMC.

    The developer has killed the trees in what appears to be an attempt to create more space on the plot. BMC should issue a stop work notice, In this case no permission was obtained from BMC to remove the trees despite the obvious offence to the best of my knowledge and what is shocking is that till now BMC has not taken any action against this developer and no stop work order have been issues.

    The BMC officials must have conducted a site inspection before granting permission for development to the said developer and how come the BMC officials allowed the developer to kill all the trees?

    There is development work for the same developer in the name of “Horizon Developers” going on at road no. 2 of liberty garden, malad (w) where the developer has killed 2 fully grown green trees at this site also without the permission of BMC and there is development work going on in the name of “SKY Developers” at site known as “Lok Sadan” which is also situated next to road no. 2 of liberty garden, malad (w) where the developer has chopped down green trees and there is also development work going in the name of “SKY Developers” at site known as “Mathura Bhavan” situated at liberty garden, road no. 3 near ICICI Bank where the developer has killed fully grown green trees and there are 5 to 6 fully grown green trees and all the trees are numbers by BMC and the developer is in the process of killing those trees also. These developers have violated Section 8 of the Maharashtra (Urban Areas) Protection & Preservation of Trees Act, 1975, that makes cutting of trees without permission, illegal.

    Hence I request the BMC to investigate about the same and take necessary action against these developers. The copy of this complaint will also send to media and all the leading news papers so that appropriate action is taken against such developers.

    Thanking You, Activist, Vikram.

  3. Good afternoon,
    I had called for tree trimming to be done opposite our gallery. The same was done by the BMC staff but in the process they were not careful and a big branch fell on my window roof and broke the roof and the supporting wood. I immediately drew the attention of the concerned area in charge. After few days he brought someone and explained to him and said that the same will be repaired. Days passed but no one came. I called the concerned person again and again he said it will be done. But till date it is not done. Now when I am calling him up, he is not taking my calls.
    How can this matter be solved???

  4. Under which section the FIR can be file in the case of illegal tree cuttings/trimmings in private property ? Have visited several sites of MCGM but could not find a Tree cutting Laws !

  5. Hi , i live in kandivali, poisar, a Banian tree just attached to one of my home wall, it’s root destroying my room floor, wall , and many my neighbour suffering to these same problem, please guide me which office I hve to visit and how can I trim this tree legally,nd hw can I apply online?

  6. I the undersigned would like to inform you that M/s, Rajhans Helix 3 Builder & Developer have killed 7 (seven) big trees at Shreyas Cinema, L.B.S.Marg Ghatkopar (w) ward no:-126 Corporetor Archna Sanjay Bhalerao,

  7. I have sent numbers of emails to Mr Ambi Asst commissioner MMC, L Ward regarding unauthorised car washing centre on municipal Road V N PURAV MARG opp. Tirupati tower, Chunabhatti The car washing centre run on main road beneath the 3 trees . The centre is using acid and and chemicals and other materials to wash cars, the polluted waste water absorbed in the grounds and goes to the roots of the trees. During the day 60 to 70 cars cleaned there. The waste absorbed in the grounds made to dried up trees after some time.
    I have repeatedly complained and brought this problem to the notice of Mr Ambi, Asst. Commr L Ward, Mumbai and also pursuing complaint till this date but he could not take any action. On the country His staff provided my personal details to encroacher. I am seeking for the help to solve problems.


  8. I have one tree that need to be cut down because of which my roof is getting broken and it is not in our property but it comes to our house and damages the roof of the house there is a chances that we may get wounded because of the tree please take a serious action urgent need your help ASAP

  9. In case of permission for trimming branches overhanging in private premises. The permission is based on permission from tree owner.
    For dangerous branches is bmc taking responsibility if the owner of the tree denies permission.?

    In such cases what is the meaning of such a permission from BMC ?

  10. If there are overgrown shrubs and trees whose branches are precariously growing and threatening the roofs of buildings, does the Society have a right to trim the overgrown shrub and branches? ( Not hack the tree, only trim)

  11. there is growth of shrubs in the exterior walls of my flat. Please advise if permission from Municipality required for removal of the shrubs.

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