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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Sep 2014

Civic body turns blind eye, fails to take note of poor condition of parks

Navrajdeep Singh, Hindustan Times  Patiala, September 16, 2013
First Published: 23:32 IST(16/9/2013) | Last Updated: 23:33 IST(16/9/2013)

Encroachment of parks has emerged as a problem in the recent past which has led to children not being able to find a suitable place for recreation. 

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The parks are usually occupied by stray animals feeding on wild grass. These parks more often end up becoming a suitable place for car parking.

The apathetic attitude of the civic body could be judged from the account that majority of these parks in the city have been encroached upon, while others remain in a deplorable state. The lackadaisical attitude of the Patiala Municipal Corporation continues.

Not only, do the corporation authorities, lack civic sense but the irresponsible attitude of the local residents have led to encroachment across parks in the city.

Parks in several other areas including, New Rajpura Colony, Sewak Colony, Model Town, Lower Mall Road, Bhupindra Road, Arya Samaj, Sirhind Road, Rajpura Road, Nabha Road, Passey Road and Hargobind Nagar depicts a shabby look raising questions over the seriousness of the civic body to pay heed to the long pending demands of the local residents for its face-lifting work.

According to a survey conducted by HT, out of 298 parks which fall under civic body jurisdiction, 20 are fully encroached and 71 partially encroached. However, the authorities claimed to have record pertaining to existence of 105 parks.

As per the available information, only 40 gardeners were available to maintain these parks.
The parks surrounded near the railway station and bus stand pose serious threats to commuters as it has a become den for notorious criminals.

“The encroachments began more than two years back and removing them now will be a herculean task. The public themselves is responsible for the ill-maintenance of the parks as they litter the places and damage property", said an official.
 
On the other hand, residents rued that rose garden, situated near the bus stand depicted a poor picture as fountains, benches, lights, tiles and dustbins lay in a broken condition. 
                                                                                 
“The concerned authorities have completely turned a blind eye towards Shaheed Bhagat Singh Park, where some unscrupulous elements have encroached upon the areas by constructing shops within the park premises,” he said.
 
Despite repeated attempts, Mayor Amarinder Bajaj could not be contacted.
 
Citizen's Talk:
 
Sarbjit Singh Rozy, a resident of Lehal colony: Besides, being a den for notorious criminals, the parks across the city have become a breeding ground for poisonous insects posing threats to our children. The authorities should deploy permanent gardeners in the parks for regular maintenance.
 
Talwinder Singh, a resident of 22 number phatak: The people should also help local civic authorities in order to maintain these parks. The residents should stop throwing litter within park arenas and should stop damaging park properties.
 
Amrit Lal, a resident of Shera wala Gate: The encroachers have encroached maximum of the parks on the behest of local political party leaders. The authorities only bother to act lazy if some complaints are sent.
 
Sumit Verma, a resident of Rago Majra: Children are only left with open spaces for recreational activities in the areas especially located in the interior of the city. The authorities should pay heed to the demands of the residents as it deals with growth and development of our children.

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