The above link is the news item published in Times of India in the Hyderabad section today. The article briefly discuss the so called ‘Master Plan’ to widen roads in Hyderabad to accommodate the growth and traffic in Hyderabad Metropolitan area.
We had a close family friend who is now retired used to work in Town Planning Office located in Masab Tank area. Its a huge complex housing hundreds (may be more than thousand) of employees authorized to work on Town Planning. And then there is HUDA rechristened to HMDA (Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority) sitting across the Secretariat, a palatial complex names after ex-chief minister of AP, Burgula Rama Krishna Rao. Now comes the fun part. What does these guys do in there? In reality NOTHING. Hyderabad is amongst those cities whose net road length have increased in least proportions compared to other so called Metropolitan cities in India, post-independence.
The plan to widen road at the cost of demolishing historically important structures and monuments is something only Hyderabadis can think of. I remember those days when my father used to do some odd jobs and was working for an IAS officer who represented a non-profit organization to preserve and protect the historical monuments in Hyderabad (sorry!, I do not remember the name). One of the cases they were fighting at that time was one that involved the significant Charminar. There were number of people who committees suicide jumping from the roof top of Charminar and Government had decided to put a check on it. So, they asked our great engineers in HUDA to form an executive board to put forward a proposal to tackle the issue once and for all. They came up with a ‘brilliant’ idea of putting up barricades on the the roof top and they did something that no one can imagine.
Iron gates were erected by directly drilling the walls of Charminar, all around. A 400+ year old structure was simply drilled by hourly wage workers who accidentally dug up big holes and then were re-patched with ordinary concrete. I think the cow-dung pan-cakes have more even surface than these patches.
Anyway the discussion is that these brilliant engineers and town planners now propose a plan to widen roads at the cost of heritage. Can’t they think of alternatives? The problem is most of these employees are candidates who are not qualified to do the jobs, either they got into the job by bribing the officials or came all the way up the ladder based on reservation, cast, creed, politics, etc. Why do they have to give a damn to these structures if at all?
The state of affairs are such in Hyderabad that a 1-inch rain can create havoc in the city and literally brings the entire city to a halt.
Hyderabadis learnt the art of life, compromise for anything and everything and you will not see flaws. They are great saints of modern era who least care about others, forget themselves and live in a world free from desires.
Long live Hyderabadi Fools (I am one of those not living there any more from long time 🙂