Delhi Underground

Delhi Underground

Dinesh Singh is a very lucky man. The new Delhi University Vice-Chancellor faced the ignominy of taking charge of an institution crippled by strikes.

Lucky strike

Dinesh Singh is a very lucky man. The new Delhi University Vice-Chancellor faced the ignominy of taking charge of an institution crippled by strikes. The DUTA had pulled off a four-day strike and was threatening to extend it for another week. On the fifth day,the High Court stepped in,leaving the teachers with no choice but to call off their agitation. As if waiting for a chance,Singh took charge the same afternoon,ending a fortnight of speculation.

On the podium

With the Commonwealth Games finally out of the way,there is a rush to project the event as a success. Leading the way are Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit’s followers. Within days of the ending of the event,several hoardings and posters have come up across the city,displaying the Chief Minister’s image prominently along with that of her son Sandeep Dikshit. The hoardings congratulate the Chief Minister for the “huge success” of the Games in an attempt to gain political mileage out of the event.

No reward yet

Public Works Department engineers,who worked on big ticket Commonwealth Games projects like the Barapullah elevated road,are miffed with the various audits and inquiries that have followed the event. They have written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit among others,demanding that if faults are being probed,then those who performed well should also be recognised and awarded. The flurry of investigations have lowered the morale of engineers who spent much more time on the ground getting work done than bureaucrats,states the letter from the Confederation of Central Engineering Services. A senior engineer complained that just a few weeks before the Games,Dikshit had promised to reward engineers if projects being executed by them fared well,but nothing of the sort has happened so far.

Signal failure


During the Games,the OC had given out Internet data cards to hundreds of employees and journalists,which stopped working as soon as the event got over. One of the network providers said they will not start the facility unless the OC pays up for the 700 data cards taken from them. But with OC now involved in saving itself from bigger troubles,network issues seem to be last on its list of priorities.

Naked protest

A constable posted with the BSF in 1997-98 paraded naked from Vijay Chowk to India Gate along with his three minor children on October 27. Ashok Kumar was on duty in a forward area when his bunker collapsed,causing him a head injury. He underwent treatment at AIIMS and was discharged after two months. He claims that despite his fitness certificate,the force refused to take him back or pay him his dues. Frustrated about being unable to provide for his family,he wrote umpteen letters to the government and his department,but to no avail. “No action was taken and I was left with no choice,” said Kumar. The Parliament Street police station allegedly detained him after the protest,but remained tight-lipped on the situation.

Self interest

Now that the Delhi Development Authority has decided to auction 100 flats at the Commonwealth Games Village in order to arrive at a benchmark price at which the rest of the flats ought to be sold,the authority is keen to get things underway. Developer Emaar-MGF had applied for a completion certificate from the land agency in March this year,but did not get a response from the DDA. With DDA’s own interests at the forefront now,the authority has hastened the process of assessing the criteria that will eventually lead to a completion certificate being granted to the Games flats.

Bus blocks

The Delhi Police seems to have found a new weapon to keep unruly drivers at bay: the old faithful DTC bus. The green buses were the barricades to choice when the police force had to cut off Connaught Place for the marathon and cycling events during the Commonwealth Games. Even after the event,it is not difficult to find the police using buses to block off roads,especially in Lutyens’ Delhi. Seems like a good idea,especially if you look at the state of metal and plastic barricades that have been run over by stubborn drivers.

Behind the scenes

The three-day PanIIT 2010 Conclave at Expo Mart in Greater Noida,UP,is not only about science and technology. While the IITians make presentations,their wives and children can take a tour of the city or busy themselves in tarot-card reading or playing tambola. There is also a special park for children to play in. In fact,the organisers of the PanIIT 2010 Conclave have a special “Spouse Program” for the wives and companions of the IITians. The programme includes a range of activities,like walks and shopping sessions.