Monday, September 21, 2009

Who Deserve the Lutyen's Delhi

The Lutyens Zone in Delhi is the most expensive site of not only the capital Delhi, but the whole of India. It is the graceful embodiment of British charm reflecting the Victorian style architectural grandeur with an ambience of openness. This part of New Delhi is comprised of beautiful spacious parks and palatial buildings which were once owned by the Indian princes and the British bigwigs. At present, it is the seat of government of India offices and the residential palaces of our political leaders.

After we achieved our independence and the British took voyage for their homeland, our leaders in power occupied the lutyens area of Delhi for their home and offices. From the most powerful leader Nehru to the lowly paid peons of government of India found places around this area. Though Nehru had his Teen Murti House for his residence, but the peons and daftaries of central government even got zafries all around lutyens. All other important politicians and bureaucrats sooner occupied the areas of Prithviraj Road, Aurangzeb Road, Duplex Road, Race Course Road, South Avenue, North Avenue, Kaka Nagar and many other exclusive rich lands of New Delhi. It was then realized that the politicians and the bureaucrats needed to work hard in building the nation and must stayed near their places of offices. Moreover, it would require enormous funds if new places were built in order to arrange housing for them.

After sixty years of independence, we now believe that the lutyen zone belongs to the government of India, its Ministers, Members of Parliament, Judges of Supreme Court and Delhi High Court, senior bureaucrats of Central and Delhi governments. Of late, in reply to an RTI plea, the government has conceded that around Rs.100 crore was spent during the last five years towards upgradation and maintenance of the bungalows occupied by the MPs and Ministers. This is a whopping amount spent on repairing jobs, whereas the furnished bungalow occupants only pay Rs.105 per month as licence fee, if they are the Ministers and MPs. Is it not cheating the exchequers?

At present, it is widely felt that the politicians of our country could not provide sufficient reasons to believe that they are the true leaders of the people. Rather, on face value, we may say that they are the representatives of the people. And therefore, they do not deserve the comforts that they have managed to annex for themselves. Sooner, a public opinion must be formed that the people's representatives must not live in the most comfort zone. We would really gain in the bargain if they shift their official home to places like Gurgaon, Gaziabad, Noida and other far off places. Thence, they would share our everyday agonies of transport, electricity, water, crime problems and might scream before the government now and then.

If that really happens in our time, then who would replace them in Lutyen's bungalows? Surely they, who are the most deserving people. The people on whose hard earned money our pretentious leaders do enjoy a luxurious life for years. A rule may be enacted that those who contribute most towards the government treasury would be eligible for a place in the Lutyen's Zone. In our country, we seldom esteem the Tax Payers.

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