Wait­ing for the Metro and mir­a­cles

HT Estates - - HTESTATES - Harini Sri­ram

The first im­pres­sion is the worst im­pres­sion when it comes to Dashrath­puri (in south­west Delhi) as you take the road to en­ter this area from the main Palam-Dabri Road. A stag­nant nal­lah (drain) with pigs root­ing about is not a pleas­ant sight, though, to be fair, things im­prove af­ter you move fur­ther. In­de­pen­dent houses and builder floors are crammed up along­side tiny ‘mul­ti­cui­sine restaurants’ and stores sell­ing ev­ery­thing f rom can­dies t o f ur ni­ture. The streets branch off at right an­gles, with Dashrath­puri on one side and Vaishali Colony on the other.

The in­fra­struc­ture in the area is noth­ing much to write home about. As Su­raj Sharma, a shop owner i n t he l ocal­ity, points out, “The roads here have only been re­laid twice or thrice in the last 20 years. They are in a mis­er­able con­di­tion now, as you can see.” We have to agree. The roads – or what­ever is left of them – are dam­aged and pit­ted with pot­holes and pools of stag­nant wa­ter. Sharma, who has been liv­ing here for the last 20 years, feels that Dashrath­puri has been ne­glected as far as in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ment is con­cerned.

How­ever, the prices here do not re­flect these ground re­al­i­ties. A lo­cal real es­tate bro­ker says that one can buy a plot of land mea­sur­ing 100 sq yards for ` 1 crore. The aver­age size of units is be­tween 50 and 150 sq yard and rentals are in the range of ` 80 to ` 90 per sq ft per month. A 100 sq yard unit will fetch a rent of about ` 8,000 to ` 9,000. Builder floors are avail­able in the form of 2BHK, 3BHK and 4BHK units. While 2BHK units are priced from ` 35 lakh to ` 40 lakh, 3BHK units are avail­able at ` 50 lakh to ` 55 lakh, and 4BHK units for about ` 80 lakh.

The catch here, though, is that a large part of the area does not have the req­ui­site build­ing clear­ance and most trans­ac­tions are car­ried out through gen­eral power of at­tor­ney (GPoA), says the bro­ker.

Lo­cals are not happy with the qual­ity of life at Dashrath­puri. Safety is a ma­jor is­sue and as Rakesh, a shop owner says, “We have had i nci­dents of chain snatch­ing and bur­glary and need more fre­quent po­lice pa­trolling to en­sure law and or­der.” In ad­di­tion, he says that the drain is in a very bad con­di­tion and gas and pol­lu­tants re­sult­ing from it was mak­ing people liv­ing close by very sick. “It needs im­me­di­ate at­ten­tion as it is highly un­hy­gienic to have some­thing like that in a res­i­den­tial area,” he adds.

Dashrath­puri has a small lo­cal mar­ket – a street lined with shops that cater to the daily needs of res­i­dents. The near­est malls are Janakpuri District Cen­tre and a few in Dwarka. There are some branded stores and hos­pi­tals on the main road and in neigh­bour­ing ar­eas such as Janakpuri, etc, and some schools and col­leges in the ar­eas around it.

How­ever, there is no green space here - not a sin­gle park or a com­mu­nity cen­tre, com­plain res­i­dents.

Con­nec­tiv­ity seems to be one of the few plus points of Dashrath­puri. Buses ply on this route fre­quently, and it is also ser­viced by three Metro sta­tions (in a ra­dius of about 5km) – Janakpuri, Ut­tam Na­gar east and west.

The Metro sta­tion un­der con­struc­tion in Dashrath­puri is set to turn things around in the area and give its real es­tate po­ten­tial a much-needed fil­lip. Con­struc­tion work is un­der­way for an un­der­ground Metro sta­tion here, as part of Phase 3 of Delhi Metro link­ing Janakpuri (west) with Botan­i­cal Gar­den in Noida.

Real es­tate agents be­lieve that the Metro will push hous­ing prices up in the area by about 20% to 30%. “Property prices here have al­ready gone up by 8% over the last few months,” says a real es­tate agent. “In fact, there is hope that the property reg­is­tra­tion work may also start with the ar­rival of the Metro.” This sta­tion is ex­pected to be func­tional by 2016. Res­i­dents also hope that once the Metro is op­er­a­tional, steps will be taken to im­prove the in­fra­struc­ture.

“The roads here are very nar­row and once the Metro takes off, there is bound to be more traf­fic here. Right now, the area is not equipped to han­dle such traf­fic snarls. Al­though the Metro will def­i­nitely help, the need of the hour is bet­ter in­fra­struc­ture and safety,” says Prakash Me­hta, who lives near Palam-Dabri Road.

The un­der­ground Metro sta­tion in Dashrath­puri is ex­pected to push property prices in the area by 20% to 30% in the fu­ture

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