A mixed bag for the City
INDORE?S WAS a tale of two cities in 2005. One, an embryonic metro trying to break free of mofussil mindsets. The other, a B-grade township where developmental efforts were frequently sacrificed to political expediency.india Updated: Dec 31, 2005 19:47 IST
INDORE’S WAS a tale of two cities in 2005. One, an embryonic metro trying to break free of mofussil mindsets. The other, a B-grade township where developmental efforts were frequently sacrificed to political expediency. In the year gone by, every positive came with a political cloud, often blighting the project.
Attempts to decongest roads (Subhash Chowk multi-storey parking), improve surface transport conditions (Bond Road scheme) and razing of illegal structures (Dawa Bazaar) all got mired in controversy.
It was also a year of supreme irony. Politicians spent most of the year worrying about pensions. Or ramifications of the old-age and social security pension scam in which more than 21,000 people were found illegally drawing social security benefits.
Although several BJP leaders found mention in the scam, action is yet to be taken against them. The residents had everything going for them, but little to show for it.
There was the Narmada, but little water. Load shedding prevented it from being ferried from the filtration plants to the overhead tanks.
Then there was the fateful day in August when the City’s decrepit sewage system could not handle heavy rain, and Indore remained inundated for a week.
After many protests over the damage done by the illegal constructions on nullahs, five months on they remain intact.
Sadak and Paani grouses, that ousted the preceding government, remained as elusive as ever. Sporadic efforts like the Bond Road project remained a mere drop in the ocean.
Even attempts to free road space near the Rajwada, the heart of the City, through the ambitious Subhash Nagar multi-storey parking came to grief. The IMC got flak for building basement shops in space reserved exclusively for parking.
Residents remained spectators when a health officer was thrashed trying to ensure that food provided by five star hotels and other high-profile establishments conformed to hygiene standards.
On the political front, Kailash Vijayvargiya’s return to grace was bad news for Mayor Dr Uma Shashi Sharma. Vijayvargiya, who had listed the ouster of Municipal Commissioner P Narhari as a pre-condition for supporting Gaur, is expected to make the same demand of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan.
If he has his way, it will be a sad day not only for the Mayor but also for the Indore which can ill afford to lose an upright and industrious official like Narhari. Especially not now when the metamorphosis into a genuine metropolis seems so close at hand.