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Discipline begins at home?

LIEUTENANT-GENERAL, Ashok Vasudeva, Chief of Staff, Central Command, hit bull?s eye on the concluding day of the Club of Lucknow?s conference on ?Vision Lucknow? on Saturday.

india Updated: Apr 09, 2006 00:01 IST
HT Live Correspondent
HT Live Correspondent

LIEUTENANT-GENERAL, Ashok Vasudeva, Chief of Staff, Central Command, hit bull’s eye on the concluding day of the Club of Lucknow’s conference on ‘Vision Lucknow’ on Saturday.

He fired, “How many of us have confronted a youth harassing a woman? How many throw our garbage in the dustbin? How many of us have civic sense?”
And in doing so, Lt-Gen Vasudeva took the two-day conference to its logical conclusion. For, both on Friday and majority of Saturday the policymakers were at the receiving end as eminent people who took to the lectern debated upon what ails Lucknow and hinders its development and gave suggestions.

But the Army officer turned the debate on its head by urging people to first become aware of their responsibilities before expecting the policymakers to change their approach. He took the policymakers to task too but not before suggesting the approach people should take if they want Lucknow to improve its image and profile among its more hyped siblings—Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Surat etc.

“Follow rules, complain to the authorities as and when you find something wrong for the will of the people is important in a democratic setup, check vested interests, file PILs on issues of concern and inculcate sense of responsibility as time is running out. Start a movement. Start it now and most importantly evolve your own model about Lucknow,” he said.

Now, the Army officer took to other important issues. “Lucknow is on the threshold of becoming a metro. But, we have to understand that if murder everyday and rape every second day takes place along with traffic snarls and other bottlenecks and if the city’s famed nazaakat, nafaasat and chaste Urdu culture disappears, the city would lose its identity and be known for all the wrong reasons. After Mehar Bhargava’s murder it appears that no woman is safe here. Good urban governance along with management and delivery of services is required to bring about the desired change,” he said.

Raja Mohd Amir Mohd Khan of Mehmoodabad urged the people to shed stereotypes about Lucknow. “Instead of self congratulating and saying that Lucknow had a glorious past, try and do something about it. Greece and Rome too had a great past, so what? Preserve the culture and those features of the city that made it stand out.” Drawing attention of the people to the recent terror attack in Varanasi he said, “The police made some arrests in that connection in Lucknow recently. One understands that Lucknow is becoming a hot bed of terrorists. Please look at the roots. This city which never had any communal conflict almost had one recently. The decline and degeneration of the city is also evident when you see that two Lucknows have developed of late.

One, where you and I are moving and the other near the City Station area, which used to be referred to as patri ke us paarka Lucknow. Do, you see the difference in the two?” RN Bhargava, secretary Club of Lucknow, informed HT that a task force and a knowledge bank would be formed which would push issues of importance with the powers that be.

“Our effort is to improve Lucknow and we would now set about the task in right earnest,” he said. Meanwhile, Nimal Hettiaratchy, state representative, UNICEF, UP, said 50 per cent of women are anaemic and 77 per cent children have still not been vaccinated. Saying that education of the girl child was very important, he said, any plan for improvement of the city would have to include this aspect as well.

First Published: Apr 09, 2006 00:01 IST