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HindustanTimes Mon,21 Apr 2014

Will two-spot plan ease VIP road?

Gulam Jeelani, Hindustan Times  Lucknow, February 01, 2013
First Published: 13:35 IST(1/2/2013) | Last Updated: 13:39 IST(1/2/2013)

The district administration is mulling over a twodharna-sthal plan to get rid of frequent traffic snarls in front of the Vidhan Bhavan.

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There is no final word yet but the district officials think that the demonstrations with less than 500 strength can go on in front of Vidhan Bhavan and those exceeding the limit may be shifted to Jhulelal Park.

“Jhulelal Park is the best option for the purpose…. But, all this is still under discussion. We are yet to take a final call,” said a senior administration official.

The final word on the proposal should ideally come from the six-member committee, comprising commissioner and district magistrate among others, set up by the state government. However, the official said, “Constituting a committee is just a formality. We already have a full-fledged venue (Jhulelal Park) there, which needs to be utilised.’

But, the so-called proposal has two minuses. First, a gathering of 500 will occupy enough space on the Vidhan Sabha Marg to cause jams and second, how would the administration be so sure about the exact number of people pouring in to hold any protest?

The permission for any demonstration is issued after a local intelligence report about the expected numbers. This, however, does not seem to have worked during the recent protests that threw the city traffic out of the gear by blocking the main artery at Hazratganj.

For instance, during the Shiksha Mitra protest (Monday), the local intelligence unit (LIU) expected a crowd of more than 2,500. Earlier, also LIU anticipated participation of not less than a thousand of people. Notwithstanding the inputs, the administration gave a go-ahead.

“It is not possible to estimate how many people would exactly attend the protests. No one would inform us beforehand that they are expecting a huge crowd. Or else why would we invite all the nuisance,” RP Singh, additional district magistrate (East) said.

Public inconvenience apart, another reason being given for the move is said to be the estate department’s expansion plan for its councilors’ residence building (Darul Shafa).

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