20,000 weddings, Art of Living event choke Delhi streets

Traffic police department lists roads to take and avoid by commuters for the next three days

New Delhi: Major arterial roads in south and east Delhi are expected to witness severe traffic snarls for the next three days in view of the ‘World Culture Festival’, events hosted by the Radha Soami Satsang Beas, and more than 20,000 weddings scheduled in the city today.

Children perform on day one of the World Culture Festival yesterday. Pic/PTI
Children perform on day one of the World Culture Festival yesterday. Pic/PTI

The roads identified include the Ring Road stretch in south Delhi, Noida Link Road, NH-24, areas near Akshardham, Mayur Vihar, Mehrauli-Badarpur Road, Asfram Chowk, Aurobindo Marg, Mahipalpur Chowk and Mehrauli-Gurgaon road — all considered major arteries and intersections in south and east Delhi.

Special Commissioner of Police (Traffic) Muktesh Chander, who is charting out the traffic plan for the three-day cultural extravaganza organised by the Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s Art of Living Foundation, visited the venue yesterday and took stock of the arrangements.

“Organisers have made provisions for parking on the Yamuna Bank. The space is limited and so, parking will be on a first-come-first-served basis,” a senior traffic official said, adding, “People should preferably take public transport to commute and avoid the Noida Link Road, NH-24 and the Ring Road stretch from the point of intersection with Bhairon Marg till the mouth of the DND Flyway.”

The official said congestion was expected on these stretches between 12 pm and 11 pm. He added that those approaching from the trans-Yamuna side towards central Delhi should use the ITO Road as Akshardham and NH-24 will be congested. Commuters from Noida heading towards Delhi should take the DND flyover as traffic on the Noida Link Road is expected to be heavy during the event, he said.

AoL gets three weeks to deposit Rs 5 crore
The NGT yesterday gave three weeks to Art of Living (AoL) to pay environmental compensation of Rs 5 crore. In response, AoL told the tribunal that it will abide by the ruling and sought four weeks to deposit Rs 5 crore. However, the tribunal told the organisation to pay Rs 25 lakh yesterday and the remaining Rs 4.75 crore in three weeks.

NGT miffed with Sri Sri’s remark
The NGT yesterday took strong objection to Sri Sri Ravi Shankar’s remark on refusal to pay the fine for hosting cultural extravaganza on Yamuna floodplains. The panel said, “When a person of that stature makes such statements, it hits the rule of law. If anybody hurts the image of the tribunal, he will be taken to rule of law.”

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