Day: June 18, 2010

Reserve fund being used for CWG?

The cost of the Commonwealth Games (CWG) will be borne by the poor and the socially underprivileged of the city, it seems.

According to a report released by the NGO, Housing and Land Rights Network (HLRN) on Thursday, Rs 265 crore from the Scheduled Caste Sub Plan (Special Component Plan) for Delhi has been diverted to the CWG fund in the year 2009-10.
 
“If one looks at the diversion of funds since 2008 the amount is much more, in the range of Rs 550 crore,” said Miloon Kothari, coordinator, HLRN.

The report demanded an independent enquiry into the transfer of funds.


The Delhi Finance Minster, AK Walia, refused to say anything on the issue. “I cannot say anything regarding this at the moment. I will have to check the records before responding,” he said.

The report, called Whose Wealth? Whose Commons?, also condemned the Games for being anti-poor .

“The money that is being used to beautify the city should have been used to provide housing for the poor,” said Kothari.

The report also gives the example of governments of New Zealand and Trinidad and Tobago, which did not support the CWG bid of their sports authorities as the Games would prove too costly.

“The benefit of the games will go only to corporates, especially the real estste conglomerates. The poor people will not get anything,” said Dunu Roy, director, Hazards Centre.

India’s bid document for the CWG estimated the cost of hosting the games at Rs 1,899 crore but official estimates have put the cost at Rs 10,000 crore, the report states.

“The streetscaping project in Lodhi Roadcost Rs 18.55 crore, twice the amount had bid for the entire beautification plan. Why?” said Shalini Mishra, co-writer of the report.

The report was released by Justice AP Shah, retired Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court. He condemned the government for ignoring the poor of the city.

Times of India: Games Leave No Room in DU Hostel

Neha Pushkarna | TNN

New Delhi: Hostellers in Delhi University colleges on north campus will be making a big sacrifice for the Commonwealth Games. For almost three months, they will attend classes as day scholars in the next session. They don’t have a choice. Six colleges have asked students to vacate the hostels by the end of this month so that renovation can take place to make these buildings fit for players to stay during the Games.

The only consolation for the ousted students is that on returning to their rooms in the second half of October, they will find the accommodation far more comfortable than at present.



Before that, however, nearly 2,000 affected students will be forced to look for lodgings elsewhere when the new session begins in July. ‘‘We have been asked to vacate the rooms by the last week of May. So I will be looking for lodgings in either Vijay Nagar or Hudson Lane. With so many others also hunting for accommodation, finding a place is going to be tough,’’ said Siddhartha Jain, a second-year student of BCom (honours) in Shri Ram College of Commerce. The college has asked hostellers to vacate rooms within three days of their last exam.

This is the first time the government is providing any grant for renovation of hostels. Obviously, colleges found the offer hard to resist. All colleges on the campus, which are going to be venues for rugby tournaments, have got grants from the government through UGC ranging between Rs 40 lakh and Rs 1 crore for upgrading the hostels. This is over and above the funds released for furnishing.

STUDENTS SUFFERING

SRCC, Hindu, Ramjas, KMC have ordered students out of hostels till the Games end

Hans Raj and Daulat Ram are still trying to find a way out

At St Stephen’s and Miranda House, however, students may stay put There are a total of around 1700 seats in college hostels at North Campus But the number of students in the hostel exceed the number of seats since many rooms had to be shared after OBC quota was implemented RENOVATION AHEAD OF CWG Colleges promise swankier hostels

New Delhi: Several Delhi university colleges have asked their students to vacate hostels as they plan to renovate them in time for the Commonwealth Games.

Nishant Pandey, a firstyear BA student in Hindu College, said students had been asked to return only after October 20. ‘‘We have started booking rooms since rents are expected to shoot up in view of the increased demand in the next session,’’ he said.

Chandrachur Singh, warden, Hindu College Hostel, said colleges couldn’t afford to miss this opportunity. ‘‘It’s a painful decision for us. But the maintenance of hostels was also long due. We have managed the hostels only with the fees charged from the students which is just about adequate to meet the electricity and water bills.’’

‘‘A lot of work needs to be done and it may easily take three months,” Singh said.

The colleges will be mostly working on

the flooring, providing new beds and upgrading bathrooms to international standards. SRCC principal P C Jain called it a blessing in disguise. ‘‘I agree students may have problems staying elsewhere from July to October but they will return to swanky accommodation,’’ he said, adding that the college has got Rs 40 lakh and more funds were on the way.

Tanvir Aeijaz, warden at Ramjas College, suggested students could stay with local guardians. ‘‘The new session will begin only in the last week of July. They will have to manage only through August and September since they may have vacations in October again,’’ he

said.

Every year, students have to re-apply for a room in the hostel which is based on merit. Aeijaz said Ramjas may allot rooms at the time of admission this year but the students will be accommodated only after the players have gone. On the other hand, Hans Raj College may only give hostel rooms to seniors and not the new students. ‘‘We still have to decide. It is likely that we may not allot rooms to the first year students and accommodate around 80-90 senior students alone,’’ said principal V K Kawatra.

Residential students at Miranda House and St Stephen’s will, however, stay put. ‘‘We are not renovating the six residential blocks as we do not have a bursar who is the financial officer. We will give our hostels to players in the same condition as they are now,” said St Stephen’s principal Valson Thampu. Miranda House principal Pratibha Jolly said the students will return to the hostel in July even as renovation work continues.


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