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Gurgaon: Yet to become a Millennium City

Gurgaon, millennium city, rain, water drainage system, town planning, real estate, Aravali, realtymythss
“Till two decades ago, Gurgaon had a proper sewer management system with four natural water bodies. But the race to become Millennium City killed it all. The developers did not understand the value of natural water reservoirs and drainage systems. They covered the drainage, filled all the water bodies, covered every inch for any possible development”

Gurgaon, millennium city, rain, water drainage system, town planning, real estate, Arawalis

Santosh Sinha

Yet again it rained, yet again Gurgaon got blocked! The situation is worsening year after year. This time, even the administration surrendered, asking commuters from other cities to refrain from entering Gurgaon, the so-called ‘Millennium City’. Schools are closed, government offices are shut, and holidays have been declared, still, no concrete step was taken to solve the real issue.  A mere 2 hours of rain brought the city to a standstill. Why a city like Gurgaon, having the presence of a majority of the MNCs with world class buildings and Business Parks, gets choked even with slightest of rain! There has to be only one reason to it i.e. poor Town and Urban Planning.

Well, Urban Planning is a technical and political process concerned with the development and use of land, protection and use of the environment, public welfare, and the design of the urban environment, including air, water, and the infrastructure passing into and out of urban areas such as transportation, communications, and distribution networks. Clearly, designing a proper drainage and sewer system and procurement of natural water reservoirs are one of the prime jobs of the town planners. Unfortunately, in Gurgaon, this job was passed on to the private developers who, as per their wish, plotted every inch of the city for development of societies and housing colonies.

Till two decades ago, Gurgaon had a proper sewer management system with four natural water bodies. Being situated at the foothills of the Aravallis, water is bound to make its own course unless managed properly. The developers did not understand this simple logic. They covered the drainage, filled all the water bodies, covered every inch for any possible development. The entire responsibility fell on Badshahpur drain, which is always blocked. Authorities too did not bother to check them as real estate became the major source of revenue in Gurgaon. Gradually, the artificial development took over nature’s law, forcing the later to show its might. When nature teaches, the lessons are learned the hard way! Ironically, Gurgaon became a ‘Millennium City’ with no drainage and sewer system, no waste management policies, no civic amenities in place and finally, no authority to reach out to!

There are cities around the world which revived their water system making them one of the advanced worldwide. Singapore, for example, was reeling under the same problem. But the city administration chalked and implemented a fool-proof plan to harvest even a single drop of water. Today it is one of the cleanest cities in the world with advanced water management technologies. Gurgaon administration too needs to wake up out of its slumber and implement such technologies. It must procure its natural reservoirs, develop artificial ones and develop a drainage system to route out the water. It must also establish water treatment plants.

Unfortunately, the state administration does not have much time left for all these.Mere changing names would not make any difference. It has to react fast.  Otherwise, what happened on July 28 was just a trailer; the ‘Millennium City’ would not be able to handle the entire picture.

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