Shivaji Park wears a ravaged look after political rallies, several of which are held there every year.
Flags, placards and footwear comprise the debris that is left behind after every rally. At such times, it’s difficult to imagine that the ground is the cradle of Mumbai’s rich cricketing history.
The pitches are frequently damaged during the rallies. Also, because of the preparations that are made for the rallies, the pitches can’t be properly watered, which is why they are very dry and crumble easily.
Shivaji Park is also used for football, kho-kho and kabaddi tournaments.
A member of the Shivaji Park Area Locality Management, Ashok Ravat, however, said: “The civic body has, in the last two years, been cleaning up the ground within 24 hours after such
“We want the civic body to not give permission for more than 10 rallies a year. And also to maintain the ground in a way that it can sustain such frequent abuse,” said Ravi Pathare, a local resident.
But there’s lots more that’s wrong with the ground. Many urinate along its edge and food vendors leave a trail of litter as they go around the park selling their wares.
“Several drug addicts come here in the evenings and people drink here as well. Because of all this, I always accompany my daughter for her evening walks. It’s not safe for her to go there alone,” said Shazia Ansari, a resident of Shitaladevi locality.