You want to visit a relative or a friend late at night and you find all gates to his colony locked. You have nowhere to go but to wander around and look for an alternative way to your destination.
Most colonies in the city have illegally erected heavy iron gates on all their access roads and a majority of these unmanned gates are kept locked. At night, most colonies in the Capital keep only one gate open for entry and exit, creating trouble for commuters who don’t know which gate is accessible.
According to Delhi high court ruling, gates to residential colonies cannot be closed during the day. And if they have to be shut at night, residents’ welfare associations (RWAs) should post guards there so that no inconvenience is caused to people who want to visit somebody in the area.
“These gates are installed at the behest of some residents who don’t want any disturbance and traffic noise near their houses. Just for the convenience of a few residents, others in the colony suffer,” said Utkarsh Gulati, a resident of Lajpat Nagar.
In emergency situations (fire or medical emergency), these gates can’t be accessed as there is no one to open and close them. To close public streets, permission is required from the authorities such as MCD, fire department, traffic police and police and only on special events can public streets be closed.
In several areas of Delhi, gates are closed during the day as well. “Many gates in Mayur Vihar phase II are closed during the day. Scooters and cars are parked in front of these gates blocking the road completely. The closed gates are no solution to security problem,” said Rajesh Sehgal a resident of Mayur Vihar phase II.
“According to the MCD guidelines, there has to be a watchman on every closed gate, so that the roads could be accessible during emergency,” said Deep Mathur, director (press and information), MCD.