The national capital is “under siege” due to multiplicity of agencies which has affected developmental work, Delhi High Court today said and opined there should be somebody who has power “over all” of them.
“Delhi is under siege by you (authorities). What is this multiplicity of authorities? Somebody should have power over all of you,” a bench of justices Badar Durrez Ahmed and Jayant Nath said during hearing of matters related to redevelopment of Chandni Chowk area in Delhi.
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The bench also said it was contemplating prohibiting plying of motorised vehicles in the area. The remarks from the court came after it was told that various agencies, including the municipal corporation, traffic police and Shahajahanabad Redevelopment Corporation (SRDC), need to cooperate to ensure de-congestion and development of the area.
The bench was also unhappy over transfer of a court appointed nodal officer in north Delhi municipal corporation and directed that all nodal officers, appointed pursuant to its orders to facilitate redevelopment of Chandni Chowk, be personally present in court on the next date of hearing on November 24.
Delhi Traffic Police was, meanwhile, directed to come with the “methodology” for implementing its plan to regulate vehicular flow in the area. The court was hearing PILs filed by an NGO, Manushi Sangathan, and others in 2007 on the issue of redevelopment of the walled city and creation of non-motorised vehicle lanes.
The bench asked the NGO to come with instructions on whether owners of cycle rickshaws plying in the area were open to registration and licensing of their rickshaws. The court has suggested that once the rickshaws are registered and the people cycling them are licensed, they can be allowed to ply in Chandni Chowk as a mode of public transport when motorised vehicles are banned from the area.
The bench said it was contemplating prohibiting plying of motorised vehicles in the area, but first a suitable alternative mode of transport has to be put in place along with parking facilities nearby, so that people can park their cars near Chandni Chowk and then proceed there on rickshaws.
It was of the view that the walled city was an area where plying of cycle rickshaws should be “actively promoted” as they are non-polluting, reduce congestion and are a source of livelihood.