With Delhi set to get a new mayor soon, the resident welfare associations (RWAs) of the city are hopeful that the long-pending civic issues would be addressed, certain policies would be re-drafted and the pending Local Area Development (LAD) funds would finally be released.
The Supreme Court on Friday ordered the issuance of a notice within 24 hours for convening the first meeting of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) to fix the date for the election of the mayor, the deputy mayor and the members of the standing committee.
The RWAs expressed satisfaction over the Supreme Court order, saying they always wanted a mayor to be elected as soon as possible.
Atul Goyal, president of the United Residents Joint Action of Delhi, said the city and the citizens are suffering in the absence of a mayor.
The RWAs feel a lot of pending issues need to be addressed at the earliest -- be it those related to sanitation, encroachment, waterlogging or potholes.
BS Vohra, president of the East Delhi RWA Joint Front, said several issues are pending for ages.
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"Waterlogging is a major problem. Every monsoon, we witness waterlogging and sewer back-flow. The Yamuna is still in a shabby condition. It will not be easy to resolve these issues until there is proper coordination between the Delhi government and the municipal corporation. All these issues are connected, including that of encroachment," he said.
Lack of funds, restructuring policies and the security and safety of neighbourhoods are also among the major issues that need to be addressed and it will only be possible if Delhiites get a fully functioning MCD at the earliest, according to the RWAs.
Rajiv Kakariya, a member of the RWA of Greater Kailash-1, expressed hope that the new mayor will not disappoint them and that stalled projects will be taken up on priority.
"We need a fully functioning MCD as soon as possible. There are many issues. Certain amendments need to be made at the policy level. Currently, the RWAs cannot hold community functions in parks. The residents cannot perform a puja or celebrate Holi, Diwali, Lohri and other festivals in parks," he said.
Voicing concerns over thefts and robberies, the RWAs said the policy on closing colony gates should also be looked into and demanded that a "municipal liability law" be enforced in cases of pothole-related incidents.
"We can close certain gates and open one or two entry points at night to avoid crime. Another issue is of trees leaning onto buildings. This is also dangerous, but the authorities will not cut trees due to the existing forest policy. We also want a municipal liability law so that if someone falls into a pothole, there is someone who can be held responsible," Kakariya said.
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