The art body has, in the 17-page report, stuck to its initial stand and recommended that all utilities, including the 23 transformers, two toilets and two police posts be relocated on either sides of the 1.5km stretch between Red Fort and Fatehpuri Mosque.
The report, which was to be prepared after a joint inspection by DUAC and all stakeholders on the L-G’s order, has been sent the Shahjahanabad Redevelopment Corporation (SRDC) for consultation by all stakeholders. The revised plan will be submitted in the next meeting, which was earlier scheduled for June 7 but will now be held later.
Smita Makhija, one of the petitioners in the ongoing Chandni Chowk case in the Delhi high court, said the petitioners have also prepared a separate report after the joint inspection. “We have submitted the report to the Delhi L-G on Thursday. We have suggested alternative locations for the utilities,” said Makhija.
Some stakeholders are, however, upset that the DUAC didn’t consult them before preparing the report. Urban designer and architect of the Chandni Chowk redevelopment project, Pradeep Sachdeva, said: “The DUAC never had a dialogue or discussion with all the stakeholders after the joint inspection ordered by the L-G. They didn’t have any meeting after inspection to discuss their suggestions or observations.”
DUAC chairperson PSN Rao was unavailable for comments despite repeated calls.
While calling the DUAC recommendations “impractical”, Chandni Chowk traders association said that the art body’s recommendations are in violation of the Supreme Court order.
“In 2016, the police post on the pavement was removed on the court’s order, as it was considered an encroachment. Several other structures were removed. Now, they are suggesting that utilities should come up on pavements. There recommendations are absolutely impractical. Their recommendations are contrary to the Unified Traffic and Transportation Infrastructure (Planning & Engineering) Centre guidelines,” said Sanjay Bhargava, president, Chandni Chowk Sarv Vyapar Mandal.