Delhi: Not Safe for Common Man : Unsafe for Women

Lutyens’ manned, rest unguarded

Capital Home To Both Safest, Most Dangerous Urban Areas Of Country

Josy Joseph TNN

New Delhi: Delhi Police is actually New Delhi’s police. The national capital’s police actually has two different yardsticks for law and order in the city. If you live within Ring Road, especially in Lutyens’ Delhi, you receive several times more attention than a person living beyond the exclusive zone.

       The statistics are there for all to see. They add to the recent debate kicked up by the findings of Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPRD) of the home ministry about the undue police attention for VIPs at the cost of ordinary people. BPRD found that almost three cops were deployed per VIP as against just one cop for 761 ordinary Indians. The study showed that states and UTs had deployed 50,059 police personnel to protect 16,788 VIPs in 2010.

      The VIP culture of police forces is best captured in Delhi, which is home to both the safest and some of the most dangerous urban areas of India. The safest part is Lutyens’ Delhi, where the national government is located and most politicians live. Some parts of the rest of Delhi are among the most crime-prone urban areas of India.

         Rashtrapati Bhavan, the President’s home and office, best symbolizes the VVIP obsession of the police force. Delhi Police has deployed one joint commissioner, one DCP, three additional DCPs, 10 ACPs, 20 inspectors and another 1,000 men in Rashtrapati Bhavan. This is besides the 200 ITBP personnel deployed there, and President’s Bodyguard, an elite army unit.

         This massive, top-heavy force is in contrast to a joint commissioner heading the entire Northern Range of the city, a 621.3 sqkm area of over 75 lakh residents. A DCP heads an entire district’s police force. The range saw 16,299 IPC cases in 2011. Just 54% of these IPC cases were solved. The statistics are better for heinous crimes — 80.7% murders, 91.7% kidnappings and 95.5% rapes solved.

         A senior policeman said the contrast was reflective of the complex policing of national capitals around the world. “This is the seat of power, this is what defines India,” he said. “Please do not just compare crime. Police officers in New Delhi are heavily involved in VVIP movement,” he added.

            Delhi has 11 police districts, and there are on an average 12 police stations per district. Anywhere between 120 and 150 personnel are posted in each police station.

        The irony of the VIP culture is starker when it comes to the level of police stations. In the New Delhi area, serious crime is a rarity. Connaught Place police station saw no murder or rape in 2011. It had one robbery and 28 vehicle thefts. In fact, vehicle theft is the most frequent crime reported in the police stations of New Delhi.
Chanakyapuri police station, too, saw neither a murder or a rape, and just two attempts to murder and eight vehicle thefts. Barakhamba Road police station saw one murder and two rapes.

           In contrast, police stations in the rest of Delhi witness several murders and rapes. For example, in Narela police station, there were 12 murders, three rapes, 13 attempts to murder, 17 robberies and 133 vehicle thefts. In Bawana, there were nine murders and five rapes. In Alipur, there were nine murders and five rapes.

CW Games continues to drain Delhi of its finances

       Rs 10 Crores. How many fans could have been provided in MCD schools?

How many toilets for children?


‘Useless’ Games FOBs to cost 10 crore

Not Needed Now But PWD Has Made 70% Of Payment For Projects Near JLN Stadium

Indrani Basu TNN

New Delhi: PWD is building two foot overbridges near Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium which are costing the exchequer Rs 10.34 crore but will serve almost no purpose. But the public works department is still going ahead with both as “70% of the payment has been already made” for these Commonwealth Games projects.
One of the two FoBs, coming up in front of the gate number 4 of the stadium, had collapsed two years ago, leaving the Delhi government redfaced. Traffic police, however, said there were now very few pedestrians who crossed at these two points and the FOBs would serve little purpose as the Games were over. Government sources also confirmed it.
“The matter had come up in a working committee meeting and later at a UTTIPEC governing body meeting where concerns were raised that the FOBs are not required. However, PWD officials claimed that 70% of the payment had been made, and the money could not be recovered so the FOBs should be allowed to be built,” said a senior government official.
One of the FOBs will be built near the gate number 4 of the stadium where the Barapullah elevated road currently ends. The construction of the deck of the second FOB — near the end of the Bhishma Pitamah flyover near Fourth Avenue Road — was begun on Friday night. Both FOBs are expected to be completed by October-end. Portions of the FOBs have been imported from France, said PWD officials.
The FOBs were to be used during the opening and closing ceremonies of the Games, when the stadium was expected to be filled to its capacity of 70,000-80,000 people. “At that time, players were supposed to use the FOBs after getting off the Games buses at the parking opposite the gate number 4. Spectators using the park-andride scheme at the Safdarjung parking and walking to the stadium would have also taken these,” said a senior traffic police officer of the area.
“Lodhi Road was then out of bounds for general traffic as only VIP movement was allowed on the stretch during the Games ceremonies. Hence, there was high pedestrian usage. Now, people can just get off next to the stadium entrances,” he added.
The FOB near gate number 4is of no use to the nearby residents of the Sewa Nagar railway colony as there is a high boundary wall running along the entire length of the colony that cuts access to the FOB. Further, buses use the parking only as a depot and don’t operate out of it, said officials.
The second FOB has the railway colony on one side and the Lodhi Colony on the other. While there is an opening at Lodhi Colony for residents to access underconstruction FOB, this is not the case for the railway colony residents. Currently only one bus uses this stretch to go to AIIMS but even that service is not frequent.
PWD, however, defended its action, claiming that it will be of use to residents and those coming to the stadium. “When there is a game at the stadium, the FOB near gate number 4 will be used. Nearby colony residents can use both the FOBs as well,” said PWD director (works) Deepak Panwar.

FEW USERS: Traffic police say there are very few pedestrians who cross at these two points

NRI: Five Young Andhrites Die in Car Crash In Oklahoma

Oklahoma Accident Aug-10-2012

TANA shocked with the death of five Telugu youth in Oklahoma

Oklahoma Accident Jaswanth Reddy Subbayyagari Phanindra Gade Srinivas Ravikanti Anuraag Anthati Venkat Rao Maddala
Five Indian youth were killed during a deadly accident at the junction of I-35 and I-40 in Oklahoma City. Around 1 a.m. on August 10th, 2012.  Police say the car was driving eastbound on Interstate 40, exiting to the I-35 onramp when it hit a big rig. The car slid underneath the truck, went down an embankment and burst into flames. All five people in the car were ejected and killed at the scene. Police say none of them were wearing seatbelts. The case is still under invistigation.

According to their friends; Jaswanth Reddy Subbayyagari, Phanindra Gade, Anurag Anthati, Srinivas Ravikanti and Venkata Rao Maddala were the people killed in the accident. Currently the bodies have not been officially identified. Among the five software professionals, only Venkat Maddala is married.

TANA President, Prasad Thotakura, EVP, Mohan Nannapaneni, Foundation Trustee, Srinivas Jarugula, TEAM Square committee chair Anjaiah Chowdary Lavu are closely working with the families and friends of deceased. TEAM Square volunteers Srikanth Rava, Rajasekhar Bheemireddy and Ravi Mallapuram are helping TANA TEAM Square in making arrangements to send the deceased to India.

Prasad Thotakura spoke with the Oklahoma City’s medical examiner, funeral home in Dallas, and the Consul General of India (Houston) and is making all the arrangements to send the bodies to India from Dallas, Texas as soon as possible. TANA expresses deep condolences to the families and friends of these young people.

TANA TEAM Square is not seeking donations at present, however there may be a need for financial assistance as all these individuals have recently graduated and employed.

If you would like to make a contribution, please visit: ( Choose TEAM Square for your donation)

TANA is planning to arrange a viewing in Dallas, Texas, before transporting the bodies to India. We will have more information on the release of bodies by the medical examiner. Currently we are putting the necessary information together and working closely with all parties associated.
Please visit for updated information.

A car went under a tractor-trailer and caught fire early Friday at Interstate 35 and Interstate 40 near downtown Oklahoma City. 

By BRYAN DEAN and ROBERT MEDLEY | Published: August 10, 2012

Six people were killed Friday in two separate accidents near the Interstate 35 and Interstate 40 interchange in Oklahoma City, including five in an early-morning crash.

The five-fatality crash occurred about 1 a.m. when a car and a tractor-trailer rig collided in the southbound lanes of I-35 just south of I-40.

      Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers said the car was southbound on I-35 when it left the road, then returned and went under the truck, shearing the roof off the car.

      The car then spun onto the westbound lanes of I-40 as it caught fire, said Capt. Chris West, patrol spokesman. He said all five people in the car were killed. All five were thrown out of the vehicle. The truck driver was not injured.

        The crash forced the closure of the eastbound and westbound on-ramps from I-40 to southbound I-35 for much of the morning.

     Four of the five victims were foreign nationals from India, West said.

We are not confirming their names at this time until we have talked to family members. It is our policy to not release names until patrolmen have notified family members but it’s difficult getting hold of them …” because they are in another country, West said.

Southbound motorists on Interstate 235 also were forced to exit at NW 6 while workers cleaned up the wreckage.

Car crash in US kills 5 techies from Hyderabad

       Washington: Five Indian software professionals, all from Hyderabad, died when their car hit a tractor-trailer and burst into flames in the US city of Oklahoma on Friday, the police said.

     The accident happened when the car, a Chevrolet Camaro, hit the tractortrailer, the Oklahoma highway patrol spokesman Capt Chris West said. Police said the car going eastbound on Interstate 40 was exiting to the I-35 on ramp when it hit a big rig on the ramp.

      The car slid underneath the semi, went down an embankment and burst into flames. All five people in the car were ejected and killed at the scene.

     The five have been identified as Jaswanth Reddy Subbayyagari, Phanindra Gade, Anurag Anthati, Srinivas Ravi and Venkat, the Telugu Association of North America (TANA) said quoting friend of those who died in the accident.

     All of them were software professionals working in US.

     Among these people, only Venkat was married.

       The truck driver was not hurt. Police said none of them were wearing seatbelts. TANA president, Prasad Thotakura, said the organization with working with the police and local community to inform the families of the deceased, and making necessary arrangements to send the bodies to India. PTI



Govt plans to choke city with 38 more botched BRTs

        DIMTS Ready To Replicate Flawed Experiment 

     Govt Refuses To Allow People’s Participation In Decision-Making

Rumu    Banerjee TNN

      New Delhi:The Delhi government decided to rechristen the bus rapid transit (BRT) corridor as integrated transit corridor in 2011, perhaps hoping to erase the memory of the ordeal Delhiites undergo everyday on the Ambedkar Nagar-Moolchand BRT.

        Unfortunately, that’s the only change it has brought about. Plans for 38 new corridors — 14 of which have been approved by Delhi government — clearly show the government is hell-bent on implementing a design that has already been panned by the city.
A case in point is the preliminary design for BRT corridors to be constructed by DIMTS (Delhi integrated multi-modal transit system). The agency, which operates and maintains the existing BRT, has been entrusted with six corridors. Despite the experience of running the Ambedkar Nagar BRT with its attendant jams and long-signal cycles, DIMTS opted to replicate the same design on corridors it will be building — central dedicated lane for buses, girded by the motor vehicle (MV) lanes on both sides.

      The rest of the road, DIMTS officials say, will be retrofitted as per guidelines set by the umbrella traffic and transport agency, UTTIPEC. “The principle of the BRT at Ambedkar Nagar is sound. We only have to learn from our experience and design a better model for other corridors,” said a senior DIMTS official.

        A better model, according to DIMTS, is a corridor that will have 15m set aside for the dedicated bus lane with 11m on either carriageway for MV lanes. On either side, a section of the road space measuring 10-11m will be devoted for the footpath, cycle and non-motor vehicle track. This is a typical cross-section on a 60m road, as suggested by UTTIPEC. On roads that are narrower, the lane width goes down correspondingly. But the segregated bus lane is not done away with, unless the road is narrower than 24m. That’s not all. The design also suggests separate parking zones for autorickshaws and Gramin Sewa on the road space in the corridor, aside from hawker zones near intersections. All this will be carved out in the existing road space.

        BRT proponents say existing lane space for private vehicles will not be touched in the new corridors. “We will make more space on the road where possible,” a DIMTS official said. Considering the corridors are going through highly congested areas like ISBT Kashmere Gate, the airport intersection, Vikas Marg, Seelampur, Dilshad Garden, Azadpur, Shahdara, Mahipalpur and Gokulpuri, the idea may seem ludicrous. DIMTS claims that’s why it has opted for a ‘hybrid’ system — where the segregated bus lane may merge into mixed traffic on stretches that are too narrow.

       Transport planning expert Prof P K Sarkar says, “The design as implemented at Ambedkar Nagar BRT is not optimum utilisation of space. The biggest problem is with the junction treatment in the BRT, where signal cycles are too long. Only if the bus lane is completely segregated at these junctions, perhaps made elevated, will the corridor work in Delhi.” According to Sarkar, any traffic-heavy junction where the bus lane is at grade with the MV lane will result in traffic jams. He dismisses the government’s proposal to reclaim road space in areas like the Yamuna riverside, by concretizing strips along the stretch. “Can that be done along all the roads in Delhi? Obviously not,” is the scathing retort. Sanjiv Sahai of DIMTS says the benefits of the BRT will be felt once the network is completed. But why wasn’t the network completed in the past four years since its inception? There are no answers.

           That the government itself is confused about the project is apparent from the fact that the PWD, which has been asked to build the rest of the seven BRT corridors (with one to be built by the MCD), has no clue whether the BRT will be a central or side-dedicated bus lane. PWD officials say the design will be finalized by consultants. The PWD is still in the process of hiring them.

       With a cost of Rs 15-20 crore per kilometre, the experimentation drive by the Delhi government on the BRT project that will cover over 300km raises several questions. Why is it insisting on extending the corridor when the existing one still doesn’t function properly?

       In a city with shrinking road space, rampant encroachment, lax enforcement, why is the government relying on a system that can only tackle moderate traffic flow? The government’s refusal to allow public participation in the decision process has only mired the project in more controversy. But is the government listening?
( C o n c l u d e d )

In 2011, Delhi govt gives nod to 14 more BRT corridors .   BRT now called integrated transit corridor .Corridor will now be built by land-owning agency
DIMTS, PWD & MCD are selected agencies .Corridors cut through congested areas like
ISBT Kashmere Gate, IGI intersection, Gokulpuri, Dilshad Garden, Karkari More, Sarai Kale Khan-Jor Bagh (via Barapullah), Connaught Place

Design chosen by DIMTS same as Ambedkar Nagar-Delhi Gate BRT
Dedicated bus lane to be at centre
Bus stations to be staggered, bus stops on either side of lane
Rest of road to be retrofitted with footpath, cycle track, kerbing of central dedicated lane
Pedestrian crossings near bus stations
Bus priority at minor junctions
CHANGES SUGGESTED IN NEW ITC Follow guidelines for streetdesign laid down by UTTIPEC
Corridor not to eat into existing vehicle space/ road space
Will have parking zones for autos and Gramin Sewa on corridor
Hawker zone near intersections
Higher parking charges
for vehicles in corridor
Grade separators at major junctions
Ban on turns
More buses
DIMTS ready with initial project report of six corridors
PWD yet to hire consultants. Once hired, design will be chosen for corridors
CM called for review of BRT project

Traffic Hazards in Dharavi: Mumbai


    Chaos Averted As Collapse Occurs At Dharavi T Junction During Non-Peak Hours. Locals Say Culvert Was Dilapidated

    Shawan Sen | TNN

  •       A major disaster was averted when a dilapidated culvert running over the Dadar-Dharavi nullah at the Dharavi T Junction collapsed on Saturday. Though there were no injuries, there were huge traffic disruptions and power failures due to the accident.
  •         The collapse happened at 11.15 am, when there was practically no traffic on the culvert because of the time of day as well as the weekend. Traffic on the culvert increases during peak hours in the morning and evening, even on a Saturday.
  • A dumper and a tempo were on the culvert at the time, waiting for the signal to change so they could enter the Dharavi T Junction.
    The culvert is part of the Sion-Mahim Link Road and carries traffic from Mahim to Sion as well as Bandra. The culvert was constructed prior to 1995 and BMC officials blamed weak soil at the ends of the carriageway for the collapse. A second culvert, which carries traffic the other direction, from Sion to Mahim, is undamaged and still open.
  •       Traffic was disrupted throughout the day, with commuters having to take diversions from the Mahim fish
    market. Electricity supply to the Bandra-Kurla Complex, Kalina and a few other areas was disrupted as cables beneath the nullah were damaged. Four cables of Reliance and one cable of Tata were damaged in the incident. “Our supply to Raheja Hospital and Taj Land’s End has not been disrupted as our other cable is working,” said K Khawadkar, manager, Tata.
  •       Ashok Kumar Ramagiri, 24, driver of the dumper, told TOI, “I was waiting at the signal when the incident took place. Initially, I thought it was a tyre puncture, as the vehicle sank towards the left. Before I could realize what was happening, the dumper fell into the nullah. I somehow managed to get out of the vehicle.”
    The dumper was filled with sand and was on its way to Kandivali from Dadar. The tempo was behind the dumper. “As soon as I saw the dumper leaning to the left, I realized there was some problem. I immediately jumped out. Police reached the spot after 15 minutes,” said tempo driver Mohammed Abdul Salim.
  • According to Dharavi residents, the culvert, which is maintained by the BMC, was in a dilapidated condition. The culvert is surrounded by marshy land. “No one has ever come to check the condition of the culvert. Garbage has been lying on this culvert for days, but no one bothers to clean it. Had the incident taken place in the evening, a lot of lives would have been lost,” said Riyaz Ali, a resident.
    BMC officials declined to comment on the maintenance of the culvert. A senior official in the bridges department said, “The MMRDA handed over the culvert to us. They constructed the road leading to the culvert and they should have ensured that the culvert could withstand the traffic load. What makes things worse is that the road is wider than the culvert.”
    D V S Jain, assistant municipal commissioner, G-North Ward, said, “Prima facie, it appears that the foundation of the bridge weakened due to soil erosion. The flow of the nullah has not been affected, otherwise it would have been difficult to manage the situation.”
    Civic officials said that it was difficult to say how long the repairs would take. “We know it is a very important junction connecting Mahim and Dharavi and is used by several people. We would like to make it usable as soon as possible,” Jain said.
  •       A police official said the road would be opened to the public after the BMC gave permission. “In all likelihood, we will first open a small part of the road for light motor vehicles,” said inspector Y C Gorde, of the Shahu Nagar police.
    SINKING FEELING ROAD RESTRICTIONS: The Mahim-to-Sion portion of the culvert will remain shut until repairs are complete. An undamaged portion may open earlier if the BMC gives
    permission. The Sion-to-Mahim portion of the culvert remains open Collapse triggers power outage
    The collapse of the 15-foot-long dilapidated culvert running over the Dadar-Dharavi nullah at the Dharavi T Junction triggered not only traffic jams but also a power failure on Saturday morning when a high tension cable was damaged. The cable, which supplies a major share of electricity from Tata’s power plants to Reliance’s network in suburban Mumbai, passed below the culvert. Around one lakh consumers in Bandra (E&W) Khar (E), Kurla, Bandra-Kurla Complex, Suman Nagar, Chembur, Chunabhatti, Kalina, and parts of Dharavi, Sion and Mahim were affected from 11.15am to 1pm.
  • “After the damage to the high tension 33 KV network following the collapse, five power supply feeders got tripped. On one feeder, around 10,000 to 11,000 consumers are fed power supply thus affecting the supply of around 60,000 consumers,” said an R-Infra spokesperson. A permanent restoration work is scheduled for today. Around 10,000-15,000 consumers of Tata Power in the suburbs were also affected. A small number BEST consumers were also affected, though officials refused to comment on the power failure.
  •       BMC says the lower portion of the ends of the carriageway, where the culvert join to the main roads, had weakened due to soil erosion
  •       There were traffic snarls throughout the day, especially at Dharavi T junction (on the Sion side of the culvert), near Raheja Hospital (Mahim) and at Mahim fish market

Dangerous Indian Roads: All Cities are same

Dangerous Indian Roads  :Contractor Poltician Bueracrat Nexus




Andher Nagari: Delhi PWD work causes deaths

Readers: Do you think the concerned minister and PWD personnel should have criminal cases for negligence filed against them?

Do you think the Police are taking this very casually because no VIP is involved?


1 more dead in underpass mishap

4 Days, 4 Deaths: Moolchand Underpass

Dangerous For Two-Wheelers

Vineet Gill | TNN

New Delhi: A 25-year-old motorcyclist died after his bike hit a Blueline bus while coming out of the Moolchand underpass on Sunday evening. In the past four days, the underpass, which is undergoing renovation, has witnessed four accidents — each involving two-wheelers — and as many fatalities. Police said that even as none of the victims wore helmets, it was found that they were speeding at the time of the accident.

Around 7.45pm on Sunday, Keshav Dutt Ojha — a Nepalese citizen who resides in the Punjabi Bagh area — lost balance of his bike and hit the side of the Blueline bus. He was flung onto the road and died while being taken to hospital.

According to eyewitnesses, the motorcycle (DL 10 SA 0294) was speeding when the accident took place. ‘‘Prima facie, it appears that the Blueline bus hit the motorbike on the side. The victim was thrown off the bike and suffered serious head injuries. He died while being taken to hospital. We are investigating the case,’’ said a police officer, adding that the cops did not recover any helmet from the accident spot.

Ojha was one of the caretakers and temple priests in the Sanathan Dharma temple in East Punjabi Bagh. He came to settle in Delhi around four years ago from his hometown in Baitadi, Nepal. ‘‘Both of us lived in the temple. On Sunday, he was on his way to Ashram for some work when he met with the accident,’’ said Nityanand, Ojha’s cousin. The driver of the bus is reported to be absconding since the incident. Cops have impounded the Blueline bus that plies on Ring Road.

This was the fourth accident on this stretch in a span of less than a week.

PWD is carrying out road recarpeting work in the underpass. And with the new layer of road about an inch-and-a-half higher than the older one, commuters have been facing a lot of inconvenience.

Moreover, the road is being built in patches, resulting in an abrupt dip in some places. ‘‘I don’t think only the road recarpeting work is to blame. Road accidents happen due to a number of factors though the spate of accidents began just when the recarpeting work started. The relaying work might have caused some distraction,’’ said an officer from Defence Colony police station.

Joint CP (traffic) Satyendra Garg said, ‘‘Traffic police officials visited the site after the four accidents. But so far we have not established the carpeting work as the reason behind the same. We are getting it examined further.’’ Four cases have been registered in the past five days.

Another officer said: ‘‘It should be noted that none of the victims was wearing helmets. We can’t point at the recarpeting work as the sole reason.

But we have asked the contractors to finish the work quickly and have also sent a report in this matter to the design and development department of Delhi Police.’’

PWD is reviewing the method of construction on city roads and, according to an official, has issued a list of precautionary measures to improve road safety.

‘‘Traffic diversions should start at least 100 feet before the work site, and it should be efficient. We have also recommended making temporary slopes where the road strips dip by more than an inch. Also, signages should be put up near the worksites during the day and night,’’ said a PWD official.

TRAGIC END: Bike that Keshav (R) was riding. Commuters say PWD work has made underpass dangerous

Corrupt Officials & Contractors

For dear life, when will we break the civic works nexus?

Broken walls, Sinking Roads, Leaking Pipes

Change the names…. Same story in all the cities.


It’s an open secret that unscrupulous contractors, in collusion with corrupt officials, fleece civic bodies by doing shoddy work and siphoning off taxpayers’ money. Every city in India has fallen prey to this dangerous nexus. Sadly, no stern measures are taken to eliminate the menace. Result:

Infrastructure remains poor, though funds are made available.

Bangalore, India’s IT capital, is high on this list. Badly-maintained roads, chaotic traffic, choked sewage and rainwater drains, missing footpaths, very few subways or skywalks for pedestrians, inadequate parking facility, acute power and water shortage, uncleared garbage, decreasing green cover and slow-moving development works, are the bane of this once peaceful and beautiful city.

On a rainy day recently, a wall built by one such contractor collapsed on a 17-year-old girl student, Sanjana Singh, who was walking home after attending tuition classes in the heart of Bangalore. She was buried under tonnes of debris. Her shouts and mobile calls failed to elicit response. She breathed her last before relief could arrive an hour or so later.

The city was shocked. Her family was shattered. Netas made customary calls to her house and offered compensation. Different inquiries were ordered.

The needle of suspicion pointed towards newly-elected corporator Munirathna. He was a contractor for civic works in that locality before he moved up the ladder. The portion that collapsed had been erected on a pipe without following norms. Munirathna was quick to deny his role.

When pressure built up, he admitted he had constructed only a part of the wall. The rest was built by a sub-contractor. He also threw a challenge: “I will resign the moment I am found guilty by an inquiry committee. I will give Rs 1 crore to Sanjana’s parents as compensation.”

Guess what the key findings of the first inquiry report are? Both Munirathna and sub-contractor Humesh Kumar are responsible for poor construction of the wall. Cement-sand-jelly stones ratio, which has to be 1:4:8 as per engineering practices, wasn’t maintained. Cement ratio was not only less but of poor quality.

No structural design and blueprint, particularly for the portion built on a pipe, was prepared. No inspection and supervision of the work. Weep holes that help water flow from one side of the wall to the other were missing.

Construction of a mandatory drain beside the wall to help water flow wasn’t done.
The estimated cost of widening of the Bellary Road, which necessitated reconstruction of the wall, was initially Rs 12.72 crore. This was increased to Rs 17 crore and then to Rs 29.55 crore, without government approval.

The findings are shocking. Not only were norms violated blatantly, but the corporation was cheated of funds. And the cornered corporator only says: “I will resign only if I am proven guilty by the court of law.

Now, a technical committee has given this report. The Lokayukta will also give its report. Police will also come up with their report. To which report should I respond?” So, no resignation. No compensation of Rs 1 cr to Sanjana’s parents as promised. The mayor says he has blacklisted both the contractors and written to the CM to initiate steps to force Munirathna step down as corporator. What about officials who connived with them or looked the other way? No action.

The public is skeptical. They fear the contractors will be back to their bad old ways, once the pressure eases. Just like hordes of corrupt officials trapped by Karnataka’s highly-proactive Lokayukta, Justice Santosh Hegde. After a brief suspension period, these officials get back to their jobs, sometimes with a promotion. Only because he has no powers to initiate prosecution.

Only the other day, chief minister B S Yeddyurappa had boasted of cutting red tape and laying the red carpet to investors. If he is keen on turning words into action, he must start with the civic bodies.

Nothing moves here till the palms are greased. He must break the contractor-official nexus.

NRI: St Louis Accident Case settled in court

This is an extract from a blog of The Law Office of Elliot S. Schlissel:

Police Officer Becomes Intoxicated and Crashes

– Wrongful Death Suit Settled

May 12, 2010

Police officer Christine L. Miller was off duty. She drove some friends to O’Leary’s Bar and Restaurant. Christine was an officer in the Sunset Hills Police Department.

Christine was served numerous drinks at O’Leary’s Bar. After consuming “a high quantity” of alcohol Christine got in her car to drive home. Christine drove her Mitsubishi east in the west bound lane of Darity Ferry Road which caused an accident with another vehicle. Four young people were killed and one was injured in the traffic accident. Christine has been charged with four counts of first degree involuntary manslaughter plus one count of second degree assault. She is currently on an unpaid suspension from the Sunset Hills Police Department.

The civil lawsuit which was filed shortly after the criminal charges were brought against Christine was settled for $2.25 million. At the time of the crash Christine’s blood alcohol level was 0.169. The threshold for driving while intoxicated was .08%.

The parents of the victims sued both Christine and O’Leary’s Bar and Restaurant.

They claimed that the employees of the restaurant knew that Christine was intoxicated and did not prevent her from driving home or assist her in calling a taxi cab. The civil lawsuit also claimed the bar workers served Miller alcoholic beverages even though her speech was slurred and her gaze was unsteady.

BRT in Delhi:Worsening Mess

No amount of public outcry, suffering and  deaths seem to have any effect on the Delhi Government, run by Shiela Dixit, who otherwise has a positive image.

The Lieut Governor Tejinder Khanna has not been able to stop the worsening mess, which is spiralling out of control with another segment (Defence colony)  being   being added to the already existing chaotic Chirag Dilli segment.

BRT crawl: 1km in 30 minutes

Corridor Gets More Chaotic At Chirag Dilli Crossing, But No Relief In Sight


New Delhi: Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) continues to be a dreaded word for Delhiites. A good two years after trial runs were started on the pilot corridor, commuters still take 20-30 minutes to cross the brief stretch of about 1 km between Chirag Dilli and Pushp Vihar crossings. With four malls and multiplexes, three major hospitals, a Delhi Development Authority (DDA) sports complex and a proposed district court, the volume of traffic coming onto BRT from Press Enclave Road is only going to increase, aggravating the jams.

Even as the jams persist, none of the solutions promised to decongest the stretch, including a clover leaf flyover at Chirag Dilli, intelligent signalling, parking lots, foot overbridges and road widening has happened on ground. The result: Those who commute in private vehicles continue to have a harrowing experience.

‘‘Even on Sundays when all the roads are empty, there is a jam on the Chirag Dilli crossing on BRT. I take anything between 20-30 minutes to cross this stretch. This has only become worse with the malls opening in Saket,’’ said Prerna Gandhi, a resident of Amar Colony.

What makes it worse is that a majority of south Delhi residents depend on hospitals on Press Enclave Road for healthcare. With the only access to the stretch provided through this part of BRT, reaching a hospital has also become a pain.

‘‘There aren’t any big hospitals in the area apart from Moolchand, which is always crowded. But reaching any of the hospitals on Press Enclave Road is a huge pain. I was taking my father there for a checkup and ended up spending a good 35 minutes just to cover the 2-3 km stretch,’’ said Amit Dhingra, a resident of Greater Kailash-II.

Commuters feel it is even more frustrating to see an empty bus lane on the side, even as the entire road, cycle track and even footpath are bursting at their seams with vehicles and pedestrians.
‘‘Every morning, there are bikes on the cycle lane, forcing cyclists onto the footpaths and people like us have no space to walk. I have to brave all the traffic just to reach the Chirag Dilli bus stop everyday,’’ said Shekhar Jain, a resident of Shiekh Sarai.

Added businessman Hitesh Sharma: ‘‘The BRT is a nuisance. I travel to Pushp Vihar frequently, and the morning traffic here crawls, literally. If a car breaks down or there is a minor accident, that means chaos. Even the footpaths are taken over by vehicles.’’ The solutions to the jams between Chirag Dilli and Pushp Vihar crossings, which were proposed by the government when lane segregation was enforced on the corridor two years ago, are yet to see the light of day.

Delhi Integrated Multi-Modal Transit System (DIMMTS), which is operating the corridor, was supposed to put up intelligent signals to bring down waiting time at the Chirag Dilli crossing. But the project was recently approved and installation has just begun.

The other solution, construction of a grade separator at Chirag Dilli to reduce waiting time, i still in the planning stage. According to officials, the location and final design have been finalised and submitted to Delhi Development Authority (DDA)’s technical committee for approval. But there are no plans to start construction anytime soon.

In a desperate bid to make BRT work, the government had proposed construction of parking lots where people can leave their cars and use BRT and foot overbridges in the corridor. But even these are not ready for use. ‘‘As for now, it has been put on the backburner till the Commonwealth Games. The unofficial direction seemingly is to maintain status quo on the corridor,’’ said a senior official, who pleaded anonymity.