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Why are all these vehicles parked in front of East End’s Gate No 2?

This is the post excerpt.

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Residents of East End Apartments in Mayur Vihar Phase I Extension are worried that the road outside the society’s Gate No 2 will soon turn into a congested parking lot. The problem emerged about six months back, when it was decided that a parking space behind the New Ashok Nagar Metro station would be converted into quarters for the Metro staff.

The plot, which was so far being used as parking space, falls under the jurisdiction of Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC). DMRC has now constructed a residential society for Metro officials in its place. In the absence of a parking space nearby, outsiders, auto-rickshaws and rickshaw pullers have started parking in the area.

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JP Verma, the general secretary of the East End Apartments managing committee, said, “The situation is still under control, but soon the area will be crowded with parked vehicles. DMRC should have provided a parking space prior to converting the old one into quarters for the Metro staff. Several people park their cars and bikes here, and take the Metro to reach their destination. We have discussed this issue several times and have decided to write to DMRC about it.”

When City Spidey got in touch with DMRC officials to discuss the matter, a senior public relations official said, “The department does not have any land to allot for parking now. We have asked Delhi Development Authority to provide some space for parking.”

Website: CitySpidey

 

People can use the underpasses at Rajeev Chowk and Signature Towers from today

The underpasses of Rajeev Chowk and Signature Towers that were slated for inauguration on January 10 will finally be inaugurated today. The construction of these two underpasses by NHAI (National Highways Authority of India) had caused major traffic hurdles in the last six months.

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While the Signature Tower underpass entailed a budget of Rs 215 crores the one at Rajeev Chowk cost Rs 235 crores. According to sources, foot over bridges are also going to be constructed in these areas for the convenience of pedestrians.

The Signature Tower underpass will facilitate smooth access from Sector 14 and Sector 17 to the Huda City Metro Station. On the other hand, with this underpass in place residents of South City 1 will also have an easier access to Sector 14. As people from Sohna Road and Old Gurgaon start using this underpass to commute to Central Delhi, a major traffic congestion at Rajeev Chowk shall be averted.

Another major underpass will be constructed at the IFFCO Chowk. Once it comes into place, traffic will be regulated for condominiums on MG Road.

Noida residents oppose proposed hike in water tariff

The Federation of Noida RWAs (FONRWA) and Noida Federation of Apartment Owners Association (NOFAA) are opposing Noida Authority’s recent proposal to hike water tariffs in the city. FONRWA has also appealed to residents to stop paying water bills if a hike does take place.

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Noida Authority recently announced that it planned to hike water tariffs from the next financial year. It also announced that it would collect sewage charges from residents on the lines of what the Delhi government does.

The minimum charge of water in residential areas is Rs 6 per kilolitre and the maximum Rs 7.5 per kilolitre. Noida News

NP Singh, president of FONRWA, told City Spidey that Noida Authority could not compare itself to Delhi as a justification to hike its water tariffs. “In Delhi, the first 20,000 kilolitres of water is supplied free to residents, after which the tariffs are applicable. Also, Delhi is supplied treated water, whereas in Noida the water supplied to residents is untreated and inferior in quality. Delhi water is potable, but Noida water is unfit even for washing and bathing. SO on what basis can they equate the water tariffs of the two cities?” Singh said.

Singh also said that on September 9, 2000, the Supreme Court and the chief secretary of Uttar Pradesh had directed Noida Authority to construct a water treatment plant in Gautam Budh Nagar within two years. But even after 17 years, there has been no action on the order. “Noida Authority must also instal a water meter in every house and then fix the charge of water as per the size of the house,” Singh said.

Rajiva Singh, president of NOFAA, said that the Authority should first concentrate on improving the quality of water supplied to high-rises and also ensure it is enough to meet the demand of residents. Right now, he said, both quality and quantity of water were woefully low. “We will not have to instal RO systems in the house and not buy water bottles for daily use,” he said. “We have even written to Noida Authority CEO Alok Tandon about this,” Singh said.

Indirapuram AOAs to meet deputy registrar over renewal of their registrations

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Miffed over the repeated delay in renewal of Apartment Owner Association (AOA) registrations, heads of several AOAs from Indirapuram and Ghaziabad have now decided to meet the Deputy Registrar of Societies and Chit Funds at Meerut over the issue.

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Speaking to City Spidey, heads of several high rise societies alleged the presence of touts and middlemen between officials and AOA members. These touts demand a certain sum for speeding up the process and getting the work done. The AOA members also said that the process is being delayed on the pretext of submitting old documents (related to the AOA body). They also say that sometimes the documents requested for date back to the time when the builder managed the society.

Speaking to City Spidey, Jigyasu Pant, a former AOA member from Gaur Green City Society said that this meeting is aimed at bringing the AOAs and officials on one common platform of understanding. “We had applied for the renewal of our AOA registration in 2011 and we ultimately received the certificate in 2013. During the course of our follow-ups, the officials kept demanding for old documents. Many of these documents were not readily available,” said Pant.

Similar views were shared by Mohit Mishra, AOA member from HRC Professional Hub, another residential society. The AOA members also said that the process is being delayed on the pretext of submitting old documents (related to the AOA body). In his words, “The officials often ask for documents from the time when the society was being managed by the builder. Providing these documents is not always possible. Therefore we have to bribe the middlemen who unnecessarily complicate the process.”

Sanjeev Singh, president of Lotus Pond Society too echoed similar sentiments like Pant and Mishra. AOA representatives from twelve residential societies in the Vaibhav Khand area of Indirapuram are going to approach the deputy registrar’s office in the first week of February.

 

Feedback can add to Gurgaon’s rank in the Swachh Bharat Survey

The MCG (Municipal Corporation of Gurugram) has recently concluded a training for its sanitation department. The training included several parameters that are integral in terms of improving the hygiene levels of the city.

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The sanitation department was also trained to educate residents about the importance of lending feedback (on its cleanliness drives/initiatives) through the Swachh Bharat app, the Swachh Bharat website or through the telephonic survey conducted by the Ministry of Urban Development. Gurgaon News

Of the total 4000 points covered during the training module, 1400 points revolved around feedback alone. In 2016, when feedback had not been actively encouraged in the interactive sessions between sanitation workers and residents, Gurgaon had ranked 36th (out of 73 cities) as far as the Swachh Bharat Survey is concerned. However, the score improved in 2017 with an emphasis on feedback. In 2017 the city ranked 112th out of 434 cities.

By encouraging feedback, the sanitation department is also urging residents to increase their participation. “We want Gurgaon to be ranked high in terms of civic hygiene and this can happen only if the residents engage actively in the initiatives. Our workers are reiterating the importance of feedback and hence this year the scores should further improve,” said SS Rohilla, public relations officer, MCG.

In the course of the feedback garnered last year, 11% of the residents said that the city is always clean, 13% said they are able to find dustbins easily and 31% said that there is daily door-to-door collection of waste. Moreover, 13% residents felt that public toilets are spaced within distances of 500 metres while 9% felt that there is basic infrastructure available at public and community toilets.

The Swachh Bharat Survey this year will cover as many as 4041 cities and will reach Gurgaon in February.

With the attack on Raheja Mall, Gurgaon residents are reeling under shock

On Monday evening, a group of masked men barged into Raheja Mall (situated on Sohna Road) and started vandalizing the mall’s property outside the cinema hall. They also damaged a few shops and told the hapless shopkeepers that they will not allow the release of Padmavat. Gurgaon News

The incident occurred in the late evening hours when the mall was buzzing with people. The security company quickly called the police who arrived with extra staff and took charge of the mall. Subsequently, perceiving the danger to other cinema halls and malls, police forces were stationed across the malls and movie halls of the city.

Needless to say the people who were in the mall at the time of the incident were shocked and stirred. “I was with my wife and baby when the masked men suddenly appeared and started attacking the mall. I ushered my family into an electronic shop and started praying that the assailants stay away from this shop. I witnessed terror very closely” said Naveen Saini, a resident of South City I.

Mahendra Pandey who sells paan outside the mall said, “These goons entered with rods and damaged the property inside. And while leaving the premises they threatened me and even broke my shop and fridge.”

An employee of a leading shoe brand spoke to City Spidey on the condition of anonymity. In his words, “The security guards were helpless and could not stop them from destroying property. The police came much later.”

People across Sohna Road are in a state of shock.  “It was a Monday so we were not at the mall. It is a regular joint on weekends for my family. I take my children aged six and eight to the children’s entertainment section. I shudder to think what if the assailants had struck on a weekend. I am not visiting any mall till this issue dies down” said Poonam Choudhary, a resident of Uppals Southend.

While the police is investigating the case, footfalls across malls in the city are bound to suffer in the coming days.

Not easy to get names updated in voters’ list, complain Gzb residents

While the district administration of Ghaziabad has made elaborate plans to enrol new voters, to make corrections and spread awareness during the upcoming National Voters Day on January 25, citizens complain that the procedure for updating voters’ list is flawed. A common complaint is that despite filling up forms and submitting details several times, they have failed to get their names updated in the voters’ list.

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Apart from the local voter ID camps, the Ghaziabad District Administration (GDA) is all prepped to celebrate National Voters Day. Officials say camps are being organised at the local booth levels in coordination with local booth level officers.

Gyanendra Singh, ADM Administration, told City Spidey that the heads of all departments in the city administration have been asked to take part, while schools and colleges have been asked play their part in educating and spreading awareness about votes and voters. Ghaziabad News

Singh maintained that the drive was especially aimed at first-time voters and the ones who recently turned 18, the legal age for exercising the right to vote. “A programme in this regard is also being organised at the Hindi Bhawan on January 25, where social organisations, NGOs, officials and residents of the city will take part,” Singh further said.

Meanwhile, Atin Singhal, a young resident of ATS Advantage in Indirapuram, made his third attempt to get his name included in the voters’ list at the recent voter’s ID camp in Indirapuram.

Singhal made his first attempt when he was 19 years old during the Assembly elections in 2017. However, his excitement about voting for the first time was doused, as his name could not be updated and he could not vote.

He made his second attempt in June 2017 during a special drive for new voters conducted by the district administration. The second attempt, too, failed, as his name was not updated. Despite filling forms both online and on paper, his name was not included in the voters’ list. “We have submitted the documents on multiple occasions both online and at the voter camps, but the names have not been updated,” said Ajay Singhal, Atin’s father.

DK Pali, president of the East Avenue Apartments RWA, told City Spidey that the booth level officer of his area had never visited his society in the last eight years. “The district administration seems to make efforts for voter inclusion, but not achieve much. There are only a handful of registered voters in our society, which has more than a hundred households,” Pali said.

Gaurav Daga, another resident of ATS Advantage, told City Spidey that the names of none of the six adult members of his family have been updated. “We also have been trying to get it done online, but to no avail. There are several other problems. Apart from not updating voters, there is also the gap between the municipal voters’ list and the general voters’ list. I have been raising these issues with the authorities via tweets for quite some time now,” he said.

Residents of East Delhi housing societies condemn property tax on common areas

Residents of Cooperative Group Housing Societies in East Delhi are shocked at the East Delhi Municipal Corporation’s move to charge property tax from societies even for the common areas.

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And the latest notice from the corporation wants all societies to cough up arrears in the tax thus calculated from the year 2004-05, citing different sections of the DMC Act for its demand. Delhi news

Residents are shocked, as the notice wants them to pay property tax on the society office, common space, recreation hall, basement, reception, guard room and other common areas.

“Your attention is invited that you were required to submit your property tax return in respect of vacant land, super covered area of the building being in the capacity of owner/occupier of the aforesaid property,” EDMC’s notice issued to societies read.

More shockingly, residents have been asked to pay this tax from 2004-05 till the current year.

“It appears that you have probably failed to furnish the return of property tax without reasonable cause, which you were required to furnish under the 123A/ 123B of the DMC Act,” the notice said.

At a meeting held on Sunday at Nirman Apartments in Mayur Vihar Phase I Extension, members of 22 group housing societies of the neighbourhood condemned the act and described it as arbitrary and unjust.

Sanjeev Jayaswal, president of Nirman Apartments, said, “It is a serious issue and we must all unite to fight it. EMDC has sent this notice without knowing the actual financial condition of the cooperative group housing societies in East Delhi. When most of the societies are facing a tough time maintaining societies due to financial crises, levying more taxes is unjust.”

The members pointed out that the guard rooms were constructed to provide some comfort to the security guards. Private security guards were necessary, as the government had failed to provide security to citizens, the members noted.

JP Sharma, general secretary of Vansundhara Enclave CGHS Federation, said the government should provide financial help to housing societies, not levy more taxes. “In Delhi villages, the government provides funds for Chaupal [public spaces]. The government constructs community centres in villages, and here in societies it is levying taxes on common areas!” Sharma said.

EMDC had made a similar attempt four years ago of levying property tax on vacant common land. “Residents of housing societies pay 100 per cent property tax, despite the fact that we are not receiving any facilities from the government for free. But the government does not dare collect taxes from those who avail facilities from different government agencies,” Sharma added.

Some members said that the issue ought to be fought legally. Purusottam Bhatt, president of United India Apartments, said, “DMC Act-123 A and 123 B are applicable to shops and commercial establishments. Common areas, or other facilities in the societies, are being used by residents and are not commercial units.”

Vipin Bihari, standing committee chairman (EDMC), said, “This proposal is not presented before the standing committee. I assure you that I will raise this issue in the next standing committee meeting.”