City, City Where Are You My City?

A long relationship with Delhi, a small affair with Mumbai and now a new acquaintance with Hyderabad is telling me that, ‘All cities are the same!’ And that I can’t depend on any. Here on, there shall be no more love but a sore throat, aching back and a grumpy mind hence forth.

But whose fault is it anyway? Mine for not being able to ‘adjust’ to ever increasing, ever growing population streaming into these cities, bad traffic regulations, poor sanitation facilities and severe pollution or ‘them’ for not trying to change the way they are. On a serious note, it is a mess. Hyderabad is finally getting its Metro Rail that would cover almost the whole city by phases. A total of 72 kilometre stretch would ensure a smart and smooth travel for the people of Hyderabad. It will take this a year and may be the half of the next year to be complete and running, but till then the people of Hyderabad would have to go through severe pollution, heavy traffic routes and bad health. This problem could be waded off saying that one has to pay a price for something good, but I want to ask if this is the only way out?

And even though cities like Delhi and Mumbai have their fair share of locals and metros the problem still remains. Because may be the solution doesn’t stop at providing more buses/trains/metros only but also how these things are managed. How is the traffic regulated and how can it be better organised, because eventually if some thought is not given into it Hyderabad metro could become overcrowded like Delhi metro which is a nightmare to travel through during peak hours. The Delhi sarkar keeps on dropping in buses before every election, but does it ensure they run on time, have substantial intervals between them, the timings of the upcoming bus is intimated on the bus stops? The Mumbai local stations are dingy and sad looking; their ticket counters are a kilometre away from the entry point. How difficult is it to put entry and exit points like the metro to simplify the process?

Not only does the conveyance but the whole traveling experience needs to be improvised. Urinals, water taps with drinkable water, trees on the pathways and safe roads are extremely important to make a city feel like one. We are paying a hefty price to be here, so much so that, we are debiting through our health and peace of mind. How is it we are so accustomed to this reality of ours?

As for me, this blindfolded urbanization doesn’t work at all.

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