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Imitation is the best form of flattery-
Or is it? In the name of development, we've been hell bent in destroying our greeneries, fauna and hills and that too for crores as we aspire to become the new Shanghai. Well, our dear friends and friends, policy makers, Shanghai is well... Shanghai. Nothing wrong with development. But, it must be done taken into consideration the specification of the people, culture, habits and the environment.
Going through a not so old copy of Mumbai Mirror dated April 10, I was horrified on see the picture of Marine Drive where a coastal road of 2.3 kms is proposed along the Queen's necklace.
The effect of such a proposal:The promenade where hundred thousands walk and sit will be razed. I believe it is shockingly absurd. Marine Drive is a place which holds immense value not to the residents and that of Churchgate. It is an evening gate way and recreation to families who loves spending a nice evening their and looking at the still sea. In a place of Mumbai, where there is hardly anyplace to go as a result of the crazy construction of buildings, it is one of the few places to sit in solace. Not just residents but the average Mumbaikars and non-Mumbaikars as well who take a train to the city of dreams to be there and go back to their cities. It is a jewel in our Mumbai filled with bottle necks. A place we are extremely proud of. It represents a way of life of the average Mumbaikars.
The promenade regularly sees the likes of many celebrities and business men like Anil Ambani jogging regularly in the early morning. I have often seen Anil, followed by his Black Cats commando running on the track. Not just him, but the average city goers does their jogging, exercise and reading the newspapers there. It is and I strong feel, it should be made a historical heritage as when we think of Mumbai, Marine Drive is one of the places which comes to our mind. Moreover, it is a popular tourist attraction and so many tourists visit the place. It is one place where many of us have grown, gone for a date, stealing a kiss, made meaningful conversation with a complete stranger and admiring the beauty of life.
It is really sad that when the government think of something, the residents of the vicinity is not even consulted. It is cheating. The residents of Churchgate as well as the regulars must start a petition and shoot it to the concerned authorities. Let's all hope their plan fail. There are other ways and means to undertake developmental projects. It is because of this attitude that the city is choking with buildings and there is hardly any space the breath fresh air in the city. We, the citizens, should take the plunge and perhaps Shri Anna Hazare must lead us. Time to Act citizens of India, Mumbaikars and lovers of beauty and recreation.
Let's do it.
Link:mumbaimirror.com/sunday april 10, 2011(page 6)