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Dedicated leadership is the key to turn Gurgaon into Singapore
More than 70% of the revenue in Haryana comes from Gurgaon, yet the Millennium City lacks the basic infrastructure. While we may compare the city's future to Singapore but is it possible with potholed roads and skeletal public transport?

DURING THE last decade or so, Gurgaon witnessed a boom as hordes of foreign investors thronged the city, obviously because of its proximity to the international airport. In a limited period of few years, malls and skyscrapers sprouted across the city. While employment opportunities were created in bulk, people from other states started to pour into the city. To their surprise, they found that there was no infrastructure regarding roads, sanitation, electricity or transport in place.

Though we have a great potential to make it very big yet we need to focus on several steps to brighten our future. While we should consider ourselves lucky to have so many MNCs working here but it also gives us a responsibility to make sure that we provide them the best infrastructure we can. But have we been able to do so? Clearly not.

The basic problem we face is the lack of infrastructure, which is definitely inadequate for the ever-increasing population. Take a look at our roads; they are pot-holed, we have buffaloes and cows roaming our roads and our public transport is non-existent. We need to build flyovers, underpasses and foot-over bridges. This will decongest our roads and public transport needs to be made available as soon as possible. If we have an efficient public transport service, people would park their cars at home and use it to save the costs and time. This will help us in protecting our environment as well.

We have electricity issues, and they can be contained only if we build more power stations. Though we have heard that government is mulling to build more power stations but they need to speed up the process.

Another main issue that could have serious repercussions on our future is that we need to ban the use of bore-wells. More than 90% people here use the ground water, depleting the underground water table. We need to make sure that water supply scheme is strengthened. We need to develop water treatment plants. Water harvesting needs to be adopted in letter and spirit. Government needs to make sure that builders develop water treatment plants in every mall or big building they construct.

We have policing issues here as well. Current strength that is around 3000 personnel needs to be doubled. More money means more crime, so more police force is required. We need to have both conventional and electronic surveillance systems installed at traffic crossings, bus-stands, malls, shopping places, etc. Where conventional policing can’t help, CCTVs could be handy to curb the crimes.

Above all, we are facing a leadership crisis here in our city. We need to have officers who enjoy the following of their juniors and who can inspire others to work. We need to have people like the new HUDA administrator, Mr Praveen Kumar who has the zeal to work. You will find him carrying the demolitions of the illegal encroachments at 5 in the morning. Such people will revolutionise our efforts to brighten the city.

So many government projects are announced and are being carried out as well. But we need to generate pace so that they are finished in time. We need to have dynamic people who can prove themselves with their work. Unfortunately, the previous government issued licenses in bulk to the builders without even bothering to think about its repercussions but we believe and hope that the current government will take all the steps necessary to make Gurgaon the best place for the residents and investors.

We need to have international standard infrastructure here in Gurgaon. That is surely going to bring in more investors. More investors mean more money and more people as well. We need to have better administrators in Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon (MCG), who can make the people work there. The current leadership, it seems is non-existent. We have seen contractors going on strike. Things like this should be taken care of. During the last MCG commissioner's stint, many companies including mine were awarded projects to decongest the traffic in old Gurgaon. We deployed our marshals there and thankfully we were able to decongest the traffic there but as soon as the new commissioner took over, the project was thrown into cold storage. We were not even paid for the services. But what I am trying to impress here is that projects shouldn’t be stopped on political grounds. If your predecessors initiated good projects you should try to make them even better. But this attitude is unfortunately lacking in our system here.

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