Pune: Kalyani Nagar Residents Launch Citizens’ Footpath Drive

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Kalyani Nagar, 28th January 2023: Citizens across Pune have long been complaining of the lack of safe, clean, unencroached footpaths for walking on. Team Swachh Kalyani Nagar (TSKN), an active resident body and registered NGO, that pioneered the Resource Recycling Centre (RRC), with the support of residents, realised it was high time they need to get the authorities to sit up and listen to our plea for good footpaths.

At 10 am today, local residents and students of Erin Nagarvala School, active Residents and Senior Citizens gathered at the PMC Sports ground, Central Avenue, Kalyani Nagar for the Citizens’ Footpath Drive.

The primary goals of the drive were to highlight that footpaths are for pedestrians, identify any tripping hazards on the footpaths and reasons for footpath construction.

At least 75 people including school students were part of the footpath drive, in this initiative organised by TSKN. Participants prepared placards to reclaim safe and navigable footpaths for citizens.

Also organised were special songs by the TSKN Scrap Band – Band Bajaa De! – related to poorly made footpaths with lots of impediments, etc.

Drayson Dixon, Vice Chairman of TSKN, said, “Residents have been complaining about encroachments, constructions, bad conditions, posters on footpaths and even senior citizens using footpaths are facing the problems and therefore we are conducting the drive.
We had met Pune Municipal Corporation Commissioner and also asked him for help to remove encroachments, but no action has been forthcoming.”

Through this drive, the residents are making people as well as authorities understand the increasing inconvenience caused to the local residents due to vendors occupying space on footpaths and Pune Municipal Corporation’s inaction.

Anu Aggarwal, Chairperson of TSKN, said, “One hawker had his cart vertically across the footpath, which forced pedestrians on the road. He flatly refused to shift his cart stating that he is authorised by PMC. Escorting police personnel and PMC staff got him to shift his cart. We face this kind of resistance every day.”

Sathya Natarajan, star and much-awarded national volunteer, commended TSKN and said, “This is a much-needed initiative, and we hope it will bear fruit in the form of good footpaths that allow children and senior citizens to walk freely and safely in the city.”

The participating citizens saw high-end vehicles parked on the pavement, whose drivers would not budge, despite residents’ pleas. Escorting police
intervened and got him to take the vehicle off the footpath.

It is hoped the authorities will look into the matter urgently and will make usable footpaths for use of citizens, and manage hawkers.


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