Almost six months after Prime Minister Narendra Modi took a broom and went about sweeping the courtyard of Mandir Marg police station in Central Delhi, the station had undergone a metamorphosis of sorts.
Gone are the heaps of dry leaves and garbage littering the area. In its place now stands a well-tended garden, lawn and a spruced-up building. This is the same station from where Modi had launched his widely-lauded Swachh Bharat Abhiyan on October 2, 2014.
Sources in the Delhi Police said the familiar sight of impounded vehicles — in different stages of rusting — parked in and around the station are a thing of the past. Everything changed after Modi picked up the broom.
The PM’s broom-wielding exercise had Delhi Police Commissioner B S Bassi directing officers in-charge of every district to rid station premises of case property no longer of consequence to investigation.
“Following Bassi’s directions, senior officers of Mandir Marg police decided to clean the parking area where four-wheelers and two wheelers — all case property — had been parked. In the absence of a proper mechanism to dispose them of, the vehicles were piling up at the station over the years,” an officer said.
The premises of Mandir Marg police station also houses government flats where many senior police officers reside. “The Station House Officer (SHO) of Mandir Marg first asked his men to dispose of all impounded vehicles. They parking lot was shifted to another location and the area in front of the station was turned into a lawn and a small garden with flowerpots and hedges,” an officer said.
The two-wheelers are now parked in the rear of the station building.
Police also appointed a gardener, who comes on alternate days, to maintain the lawn and the garden. The cleaning staff have been asked to keep the premises spic and span.
Joint Commissioner of Police (New Delhi) Mukesh Meena said, “The cleanliness drive has been taken seriously by our staff and everything is being done to ensure that our stations look clean, green and presentable. All area SHOs in New Delhi district have been asked to maintain a clean police station. Measures have been taken by several stations in the district, including Mandir Marg police station, to keep the surroundings clean.”