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Thursday, July 19, 2018

Delhi underground

It’s a man’s world,quite literally at the Connaught Place police station. Upon entering the station,one’s attention is immediately drawn to the staircase bearing an unusual notice: “Women are not allowed to go upstairs”.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: March 2, 2009 2:51:59 am

A man’s world
It’s a man’s world,quite literally at the Connaught Place police station. Upon entering the station,one’s attention is immediately drawn to the staircase bearing an unusual notice: “Women are not allowed to go upstairs”. The four-storied police station has rooms of the investigating officers on the floor upstairs,where complainants can go to know the status of their cases. Why women complainants are kept out of bounds,nobody knows. Most officers plead ignorance about the unusual decree.

Out of place
Police Commissioner Y S Dadwal had a hair-raising experience at the recent 62nd Raising Day Parade of the Delhi Police. Deputy Commissioner of Police (New Delhi) Shankar Dass is reportedly acquainted with Home Minister P Chidambaram,who was the chief guest at the parade. As is the norm,DCP Dass was about to board the pilot vehicle to accompany the vehicle of the Home Minister to the event,but Chidambaram motioned him to join him in his car. At the parade,Dadwal opened the car’s door for Chidambaram,only to see his deputy step out ahead of the Home Minister. At a loss for words,the Commissioner later took Dass aside and asked him if everything was all right. The DCP told his boss that knew the Home Minister.

No more ‘Friday fever’
Last week,as news of the transfer of Delhi Health Secretary Rakesh Bihari spread,hospital administrators heaved a sigh of relief. Bihari’s indomitable zeal for ‘surprise inspections’ had terrorised quite a few senior doctors in Delhi government hospitals. Bihari would keep Fridays for surprise inspections,which meant doctors had to report on time,nurses had to behave well with patients and the hospital had to look clean. Above all,they had to ensure that none of the patients publicly shouted at the administration. With the transfer of Bihari,now things can get back to the same old ways. A senior hospital employee said: “It is the end of Friday fever for doctors.”

Dikshit fan
Chief Minister Sheila Diskhit can add another name to her long list of admirers: Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel. At the inauguration of terminal 1D at the Indira Gandhi International Airport,Patel left no stone unturned while heaping praise on the Chief Minister. From the stage,Patel said he was “inspired” by Dikshit’s consistency,as she had occupied the top spot in Delhi politics for “over ten years”. “Sheilaji is one of the few people who get the opportunity to inaugurate the same project they lay the foundation stone for,” he said to a not-so-amused audience. The Chief Minister,meanwhile,had a smug smile on her face.

Delay,what delay?
The Public Works Department of the Delhi government is getting serious heat over its inability to meet the deadlines for many Commonwealth Games projects. While the department officials are spending sleepless nights in a bid to impress the Delhi Urban Arts Commission (DUAC) with their engineering skills,high profile projects such as the East-West corridor and the Barapullah Nallah elevated road are running behind schedule. But the officials had a solution for this. The delayed projects mentioned above,along with the ill-fated flyover strengthening project between Nelson Mandela Marg and Rao Tula Ram Marg,were quietly removed from the PWD website.

Plastic war
As part of its awareness drive against plastic bags,the Delhi government is spending lakhs of rupees on advertisements with the tagline that “plastic is hazardous for the environment”. Now,in opposition to this anti-plastic ad blitzkrieg,traders and manufacturers have started a pan-Indian “Plastic Bag Awareness Forum”. Their tagline: “save trees,use plastic”. Their logic: “paper bags harm the environment as trees go into making them”. Never mind that at a hastily called press conference recently,the traders gave out thick folders carrying paper sheets.

Red faced
After repeated failures to appear before the court to record his statement in a cheating case lodged by him,Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh finally showed up last week to stand in the witness box. This time,however,the accused was not in the court and his counsel expressed inability to recall him. Interestingly,only a few minutes later,the accused was seen sipping tea outside the courtroom,even as his lawyer was busy telling media persons that his client cannot come.

Once again,Mayor Arti Mehra and the Leader of Opposition in the MCD,J K Sharma,are at loggerheads. At the recent foundation laying ceremony for the Hauz Khas underground parking,the Mayor snubbed Sharma and Congress councillors of the area by ensuring they were not invited to the event. Instead,Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Assembly,V K Malhotra,was called as a special guest. This is the first time that the Leader of Opposition of the Delhi Assembly has been invited as a special guest at a function at the expense of the Leader of Opposition of the Corporation. A furious Sharma is now taking his complaint (about the Mayor’s failure to comply with protocol) to the Lieutenant-Governor.

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