DDA asks residents for input on Delhi’s Master Plan 2041
The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) has sought suggestions from the public for the city’s new vision document, Master Plan of Delhi-2041.
The move comes months after the DDA and the National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA), which has been roped in by the DDA to prepare the MPD-2041, held a two-month-long public consultation last year.
A senior DDA official said that this is being done to ensure maximum participation from the public before the draft of MPD-2041 is prepared. “People can give their suggestions and share their ideas about what kind of the city they want Delhi to be. The idea behind this exercise is to get maximum participation,” said the official.
DDA on January 6 also tweeted along with a link of the form for suggestions from the public, “Be a part of RE-INVENTING DELHI! DDA is preparing Delhi’s next Master Plan for 2041. Being a resident of Delhi, click on the link below & aid in creating a vision for your city that will steer the next master plan. 5 statements! 10 minutes of your time!”
In the form, DDA has asked people about the issues they face currently which they want to be addressed in the next vision document. The land-owning agency has also asked people to list five important things they must address to ensure planned and sustainable development of the city. DDA officials say that no deadline has been set for the exercise so far.
From rampant commercialisation due to mixed land use to poor implementation of MPD-2021 to frequent amendments in the plan to regularise “illegal” developments, Resident Welfare Associations (RWAs) say that the next master plan should take into account “ground realities” and provide solutions to local problems.
In the last 14 years, when mixed land use was allowed in Delhi, RWAs say it has led to commercialisation of residential areas.
Rajiv Kakria, convener, Save Our City campaign and a resident of Greater Kailash-I, said, “It has destroyed the residential character of neighbourhoods. Today, safety and security has become our utmost concern due to rampant commercialisation of residential areas. We don’t know who is entering our areas. It has destroyed the social fabric. Our top priority is that residential, industrial and commercial areas should have dedicated space. Safety and security of residential areas should be maintained.”
BS Vohra, president of East Delhi RWA joint front, said, “Apart from mixed land use, the new Master Plan should also focus on making the city roads more pedestrian friendly. There is an urgent need to find a solution to the problem of traffic congestion.”
While RWAs want the problem of rampant commercialisation to be addressed, traders’ associations in the capital want planned commercial spaces and a permanent solution to the problem of sealing.
Praveen Khandelwal, secretary general, Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT), said, “Development of commercial space has not kept pace with the city’s growth. DDA should assess the requirement for commercial space and plan accordingly. There is a need to provide planned commercial spaces in the city and also protect present businesses from sealing and demolition action.”
NGOs and experts working for the welfare of under-privileged people in turn want the DDA to reach out to these people also so that they can have a say in the plan.
Shalaka, coordinator of ‘Main Bhi Dilli’ campaign (a collective of individuals and organisations working on creating awareness about the MPD-2041), and member of Indo-Global Social Service Society (IGSSS), a voluntary organisation, said, “It is good that the DDA is reaching out to people. But there is a need to organise mass outreach programme so that people living in unauthorised colonies and slum clusters also get a chance to give their inputs. They will not be able to fill-up the form online.”
While the DDA is asking people to give a broad vision for the city, citizens want an issue-based discussion on various aspects of MPD-2041.
Atul Goyal, president of URJA, a collective of RWAs in the city, said, “There are several components of MPD which require detailed discussion. The DDA should have issue-based discussion with people on mixed land use, transportation, redevelopment, development of unauthorised colonies impact on plotted developments. There should be a provision to audit. We should know what all has been achieved.”