Fight­ing a bat­tle for power, wa­ter

HT Estates - - HTESTATES - Rozelle Laha

Al l is not well for the res­i­dents of In­der­lok, which i s an au­tho­rised colony lo­cated just a few kilo­me­teres from Karol Bagh and Kamla Na­gar. Res­i­dents here are de­prived of even the most ba­sic of ameni­ties such as clean wa­ter, proper sew­er­age lines, con­crete roads and elec­tric­ity. This has neg­a­tively im­pacted the real es­tate prospects of the area, de­spite the ad­van­tages it has in terms of con­nec­tiv­ity to the rest of the city.

Wa­ter scarcity is per­haps the big­gest chal­lenge for In­der­lok. Most parts of Delhi get wa­ter sup­ply for an hour-and-a-half, twice a day. How­ever, the story here is dif­fer­ent and a lit­tle pe­cu­liar. “The power cut tim­ings clash with the wa­ter sup­ply tim­ings. Since the mo­tors do not work with­out elec­tric­ity, we are mostly with­out wa­ter,” says Ab­dul Wahid, a res­i­dent. What­ever wa­ter we get is also not fit for drink­ing and looks as if it has passed through a gut­ter, he adds.

“O n c e p owe r s u p p l y i s re­stored, we have to make re­peated re­quests to the wa­ter sup­ply sta­tion in block B of In­der­lok to switch on the mo­tors. Peo­ple man­ning the sta­tion are not al­ways prompt and some­times we don’t get sup­ply for an en­tire day,” rues Mo­ham­mad Ashoo, an­other res­i­dent.

There are many res­i­den­tial blocks here where peo­ple have set up gro­cery and veg­etable shops on the ground floors of their build­ings. This is mak­ing the area more con­gested and noisy. “In­der­lok is a res­i­den­tial area and by set­ting up such shops, many owners have mis­used the space,” says A K Dixit, ex­ec­u­tive engineer, Karol Bagh zone, MCD.

The lanes and roads here are vir­tu­ally clogged be­cause of ex­tended bal­conies, mo­bile veg­etable stalls and chicken and gro­cery shops on pave­ments. Hap­haz­ardly parked cars, bikes and cy­cle rick­shaws add to the chaos. Ini­tially, three storey build­ings were handed over to the orig­i­nal oc­cu­pants. To­day, peo­ple have made ver­ti­cal and hor­i­zon­tal ex­ten­sions to th­ese build­ings mainly by con­struct­ing bal­conies.

In­ci­den­tally last year, a four -storey build­ing had col­lapsed in this area, lead­ing to the deaths of seven per­sons. “Fol­low­ing this in­ci­dent, we un­der­took an ex­er­cise of iden­ti­fy­ing dan­ger­ous build­ings and is­sued no­tices to the re­spec­tive owners for ren­o­va­tion,” in­forms Deepak Puro­hit, deputy com­mis­sioner, Karol Bagh, Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion of Delhi (MCD)

I nter­est­ingly, not many faulty build­ings were identi- fied through the ex­er­cise. Till now, MCD has iden­ti­fied only one three -storey build­ing with faulty struc­ture which has since been de­mol­ished and ren­o­vated, says Dixit.

The real es­tate prices have not kept pace with the rate of ap­pre­ci­a­tion in the rest of the city. One can buy a 1BHK for ₹ 15 lakh and a 2BHK for ₹ 18 lakh. Rental prices, too, are fairly low and vary from ₹ 3,000 to ₹ 6,000 de­pend­ing on the size and lo­ca­tion of the apart­ments. There are also no plots avail­able over here. “En­quiries for prop­erty are few and far be­tween. No­body wants to set­tle here as the ba­sic ameni­ties and in­fra­struc­ture are in a bad state. Also, since there is no maintenance of roads and sew­er­age lines, most of the ar­eas are dirty and stink,” says Bhura, a prop­erty dealer. “The health­care fa­cil­i­ties too are miss­ing with no good dis­pen­sary here,” he con­cludes.

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