“We will do a survey of other areas and issue notices to RWAs/residents to obtain permission from the traffic police and NOC from the fire department. If norms are still not followed, gates will be removed from other colonies as well. Also, it will be ensured that the colony gates remain open for the general public during daytime,” said an SDMC official.
“In case of the two neighbourhoods, the matter was discussed with the residents before taking the action. Some residents had earlier complained about the gates remaining closed during the daytime,” the official added.
On Saturday, the Green Park Extension RWA members met the deputy commissioner, south zone. “We were never served the notices. We demanded a copy of complaints (without mentioning residents’ names) but those were also not shared. How can we believe them ? One of SDMC’s officials asserted that they were not bound to serve us notice or share a copy of complaints with RWA, something we immediately raised objection to,” said Neha Puri, general secretary of Green Park Extension RWA.
“We had installed the gates on residents’ demand and none of them were on the main road,” she added.
RWAs across south Delhi, meanwhile, said that colony gates are necessary to avoid unchecked entry of outsiders and contain the spread of Covid-19. “There are lakhs of such gates in the city and majority of them did not require any permission. If they are removed, it will only increase law and order problems. In our area also, the gates were installed 40 years back after a police initiative ‘Neighbourhood watch’ was introduced,” said Panakj Agarwal, resident of Safdarjung Enclave. He added that on Saturday, SDMC officials asked them to remove three more gates.
MK Gupta of Greater Kailash-I S-Block said that SDMC seldom responds to complaints of encroachment, pruning or cleaning backlanes, but when it comes to taking action against some good work done by RWAs, it immediately reacts.