Archive for January, 2008

Our universe is a well-programmed one where the sun and the moon rise and set in clockwork precision. The seasons come and go in an orderly way – never jumping the queue and always keeping to their time frames. But we the people have not programmed our lives in this way.

Today we have become masters of disorder. We feel like a hero or a she-ro if we have the cleverness to siphon off the limited water supply by connecting our line to the main supply line or steal power so that we have an uninterrupted viewing of the soap operas on our TV sets in air-conditioned comfort or part our vehicles anywhere and everywhere as though we were the Lord and Master of the whole world.

We spit and throw our garbage on the main road or in the neighbor’s doorway so long as our own home is neat and clean; we walk on the roads and drive our vehicles as our inalienable right of way … these are small issues but which in their sum total lead to anarchy and lawlessness. We are good cry babies but we seldom look at our own contribution to the mess around us. We need no icons; we have to become one.


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Crisis of Mobility

Ratan Tata unveiled the People’s 1 lakh car…. NANO in Auto Expo 2008, New Delhi. But do we have the space to drive in cities already teeming with bumper to bumper traffic? Here Spatial planning is more and more governed by the real estate developer’s interests. Public transports are notoriously mismanaged and inadequate.

Nobody can deny that cars provide best form of personal mobility in low density areas. But in big cities, mass transit should take precedence and land use pattern needs to be coordinated with transportation planning. Otherwise, the automobile dream of the upwardly mobile Indian household will forever remain stuck at the traffic lights.


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