It is a sudden change that has not gone down well with people. At its old headquarter at Townhall in Chandni Chowk, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi was accessible to everyone. There was no restriction on movement of people.
But since the civic agency has shifted to the Civic Centre, it has become very difficult for the general public to go there for any help or work. A number of MCD departments including health, engineering, veterinary, land and estate, education, finance, remunerative project cell have shifted to the new headquarter.
MCD director of press and information Deep Mathur explained: "Due to security reasons, we can't allow people to have free access. Those who do need to come to the Civic Centre have to get a green signal from the officer concerned. We are still in the process of shifting and everything will be sorted out soon."
Many Delhiites who have been making rounds of the Civic Centre returned without being heard.
"The dhalao (garbage station) meant for garbage collection is always overflowing and garbage is strewn all over the road. Though I have been complaining at the zonal office, the situation has not improved for many months. I decided to complain at the headquarters but I was not even allowed to enter," said Madhup Shankar, a resident of east Delhi's Krishna Nagar.
The deliberative wing of the civic agency is also miffed with the new arrangement as they are still operating from Townhall and are unable to communicate with the executive wing.
"A number of people come to us with their problems but we are unable to address it as the executive wing has shifted to the Civic Centre with all the files. Even we have to get clearances to enter Civic Centre," said Jagdish Mamgain, chairman of works committee of the MCD.
He added, "Files of various departments have also been misplaced which is also hindering the redressal process. There is still a lot of sorting to be done."
According to sources, a lot of interior work is still being carried out in the block that will house the political wing of the MCD and will take at least two months for them to shift. The 28-storey, 112-metre Dr Shyama Prasad Mukherjee Civic Centre was inaugurated by home minister P Chidamabaram in April this year. It was built at a cost of R650 crore. The Civic Centre has four six-storey blocks, one 28-storey tower block in addition to services block, water treatment plant and sewage treatment plant.