Swish locality needs a strong swachh touch – ( RK Puram )

Posted on Apr 11 2017 - 7:25pm by admin
The assembly constituency of Ramakrishna Puram, or RK Puram as it is more handily referred to, is a hodgepodge of sprawling government residences, tony colonies such as Vasant Vihar and Anand Niketan and congested urban villages like Munirka and Mohammadpur.Delimitation has reduced the number of municipal wards to three, but the dissolution of the Nanakpura ward has made the rest -Munirka, Vasant Vihar and RK Puram -geographically more expansive.And this may have a bearing on the results of the municipal elections on April 23.As the polls approach, there is a sense of futility among the voters. For a long time, Munirka and Nanakpura had no representatives, the vacancies being filled only in the 2016 bypolls. And to the chagrin of bypoll winner Anil Malik of Aam Aadmi Party , after nine months of nursing the ward, it has ceased to exist. “I had only the briefest period to work on ridding the ward of open defecation and built 16 toilet blocks. There still are several locations where women continue to defecate in the open,“ said Malik.Munirka, for all its history as the bearer of the name of Munir Khan, a 15th century Mughal (administrator), is today a modern mess of concrete monstrosities. It is a warren hole of claustrophobic lanes and tightly packed, multistorey buildings rented out to students and professionals.And in the mad race to lure tenants, the landlords have put a crushing burden on amenities like water and sanitation.Parking too is a nightma re, but the only multi-level parking here, though completed over 18 months ago, awaits formal operationalisation.Caretaker Vipin Kumar said, “Some people do park their cars here, but there is no security in place yet because the facility isn’t open to the public.“

Security is already a fraught issue. Despite international notoriety after Nirbhaya’s rape in 2012, there still are too many inky alleys for women to feel safe. Yogita Rathee, the current councillor, claimed, however, to have worked to rectify this. “There were several dark spots that were unsafe for women, but we have installed LED lighting in such spots,“ said Rathee.

RK Puram, where government employees from peons to top officials live, urgently needs to upgrade its aged water and sewage systems. Sitting councillor Radhey Shyam Sharma conceded that after 50 years, the original pipes are inadequate for current needs, worsened by newer settlements and slums joining the network. “But,“ he insisted, “this problem has to be tackled by Delhi government and DUSIB, not by South Delhi Municipal Corporation.“

The affluent colonies of Anand Niketan and Vasant Vihar have well-laid roads, clean dhalaos and pruned parks, but this has been achieved by the RWAs rather than SDMC. Parking, of course, is a predicament that is beyond their capabilities.

In the neighbourhood of these upmarket residential areas are slums like Ekta Vihar, Shiva Camp and Coolie Camp, home to maids and domestic workers. Here, overflowing drains, non-existent passageways, and alarming filth indicate SDMC has been remiss in its responsibilities.“We pay Rs 20 every few weeks to have the drains cleaned, else sewage seeps into our homes,“ said Bhoop Singh. In Mohammadpur village, Tarun Singh, a chemist, said, “Dilapidated roads and contaminated water supply are our major problems.“

rk puram
The assembly constituency of Ramakrishna Puram, or RK Puram as it is more handily referred to, is a hodgepodge of sprawling government residences, tony colonies such as Vasant Vihar and Anand Niketan and congested urban villages like Munirka and Mohammadpur.Delimitation has reduced the number of municipal wards to three, but the dissolution of the Nanakpura ward has made the rest -Munirka, Vasant Vihar and RK Puram -geographically more expansive.And this may have a bearing on the results of the municipal elections on April 23.As the polls approach, there is a sense of futility among the voters. For a long time, Munirka and Nanakpura had no representatives, the vacancies being filled only in the 2016 bypolls. And to the chagrin of bypoll winner Anil Malik of Aam Aadmi Party , after nine months of nursing the ward, it has ceased to exist. “I had only the briefest period to work on ridding the ward of open defecation and built 16 toilet blocks. There still are several locations where women continue to defecate in the open,“ said Malik.Munirka, for all its history as the bearer of the name of Munir Khan, a 15th century Mughal (administrator), is today a modern mess of concrete monstrosities. It is a warren hole of claustrophobic lanes and tightly packed, multistorey buildings rented out to students and professionals.And in the mad race to lure tenants, the landlords have put a crushing burden on amenities like water and sanitation.Parking too is a nightma re, but the only multi-level parking here, though completed over 18 months ago, awaits formal operationalisation.Caretaker Vipin Kumar said, “Some people do park their cars here, but there is no security in place yet because the facility isn’t open to the public.“

Security is already a fraught issue. Despite international notoriety after Nirbhaya’s rape in 2012, there still are too many inky alleys for women to feel safe. Yogita Rathee, the current councillor, claimed, however, to have worked to rectify this. “There were several dark spots that were unsafe for women, but we have installed LED lighting in such spots,“ said Rathee.

RK Puram, where government employees from peons to top officials live, urgently needs to upgrade its aged water and sewage systems. Sitting councillor Radhey Shyam Sharma conceded that after 50 years, the original pipes are inadequate for current needs, worsened by newer settlements and slums joining the network. “But,“ he insisted, “this problem has to be tackled by Delhi government and DUSIB, not by South Delhi Municipal Corporation.“

The affluent colonies of Anand Niketan and Vasant Vihar have well-laid roads, clean dhalaos and pruned parks, but this has been achieved by the RWAs rather than SDMC. Parking, of course, is a predicament that is beyond their capabilities.

In the neighbourhood of these upmarket residential areas are slums like Ekta Vihar, Shiva Camp and Coolie Camp, home to maids and domestic workers. Here, overflowing drains, non-existent passageways, and alarming filth indicate SDMC has been remiss in its responsibilities.“We pay Rs 20 every few weeks to have the drains cleaned, else sewage seeps into our homes,“ said Bhoop Singh. In Mohammadpur village, Tarun Singh, a chemist, said, “Dilapidated roads and contaminated water supply are our major problems.“

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