This sector walks the talk towards greener, safer neighbourhoodhttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/chandigarh/this-sector-walks-the-talk-towards-greener-safer-neighbourhood-5611071/

This sector walks the talk towards greener, safer neighbourhood

Residents living in all 252 houses here contribute Rs 500 per month each to sponsor its developmental works. This money goes into paying salaries to watchmen, garbage collectors and gardeners.

Vendors entering the sector have to carry an I-card issued by the sector’s RWA.

Sitting in a quiet corner of the city, Sector 38 West is well on its way to becoming the first gated community of City Beautiful. Unlike the rest of the city, it doesn’t depend on the police for safety and has made its own arrangements including, 18 CCTV cameras, six gates and nine watchmen. Vendors entering the sector have to carry an I-card issued by the sector’s RWA, the lanes are clean and the parks are green and well-manicured.

Rajbir Brar, president of its RWA, attributes the enviable and safe environs to its residents. “It is the result of the efforts and enthusiasm of people living in this area. Though I have been trying to make our society more safe from the day I got elected, the credit for making that truly happen goes to all residents.’’

Residents pool in funds

Residents living in all 252 houses here contribute Rs 500 per month each to sponsor its developmental works. This money goes into paying salaries to watchmen, garbage collectors and gardeners.

“Eighteen CCTV cameras are installed at the the gates of the sector. Besides that, we have nine watchmen who guard the sector round the clock. We pay them from the sum collected from residents,’’ says Brar. Residents take their safety seriously and only two gates remain open during the day from 10 am to 4:30 pm so as to smoothly regulate movement of outsiders.

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The watchmen have also been given bicycles so that they can patrol the sector. ‘’Every bench in our parks is cleaned everyday. You won’t find such a well-maintained sector anywhere in the entire Chandigarh. Our garbage collectors go from door-to-door and collect every bit of garbage from all corners of the garden,’’ said Brar, while giving a
lowdown on the gardening tools and other machines available for maintenance of
the sector.

A kitty of 51 lakh

The money collected every month undergoes an annual audit. The residents seem to be spending judiciously, for they already have collected a corpus of Rs 51.2 lakh for making more improvements in the sector.

Brar said they have not been getting any funds from the municipal corporation for maintenance of parks and playgrounds since two months. ‘’The MC must release the money it has earmarked for parks etc.,” said Brar.

Notwithstanding lack of regular support from the MC, RWA Sector 38 West bagged third prize in ‘maintenance of parks’ category during a competition at the 47th Rose Festival this year. They were also honoured by SSP Nilambari Jagdale for their outstanding work in the sector.

“We have maintained our parks and tracks by ourselves and you wont find any garbage on the streets of the sector. We hire workers who maintain our parks and paint the surroundings. Our society does this on its own without any support from the government,” said B S Walia, vice president of the RWA.
Residents are, however, grateful to former mayor Arun Sood for helping them out.

Gym and Restaurant

With heavy savings to dip into, the residents now plan to set up a gym and restaurant in the community centre. BS Gill, a local, was all praise for RWA’s efforts to get all the residents together on one platform.  “We are very happy. Anyone can see that we feel safe here. Security is very good and surroundings are very clean.,’’ said Gill, saying the sector started its development journey five years ago.

The best part, said Gill, is that they are self-sufficient. “We don’t have to run after anyone for local services.’’