This Monday the residents, shopkeepers and even offices in Shivaji Park area would take a privilege leave and stay indoors as they fear the crowds that will come to pay tribute to Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar at Chaityabhoomi on his death anniversary on December 6.
Some of the residents have even taken extended holidays from work and have gone on vacation outside Mumbai, to return on Wednesday after the crowds disperse. Speaking to Sunday MiD DAY Shivaji Park resident Sanjay Bhide said, "We respect Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar a lot, but during his birth and death anniversary it's not possible for us to get out of our house due to the huge crowd in the area."
Buddhist monks and women devotees throng Chaityabhoomi in Dadar in
the run-up to B R Ambedkar's death anniversary in the city. Pic/Vijay Bate
Another resident requesting anonymity said, "Due to traffic diversions and no Parking zones that come in to effect, we don't even get a chance to bring out our cars. We also can't go for morning walks as the pavements and the Park (Shivaji) is occupied by the followers."
And it's not just residents who face problems. Speaking to Sunday MiD DAY Umesh Saglekar, owner of Barista right opposite Shivaji Park, said, "As there is a huge turnout of people in the area, customers don't visit the shop, which brings our sale down by 60 per cent." Vaibhav Jadhav, owner of Cheelizza outlet nearby said they might come up a special scheme for the day to attract the customers.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has erected a pandal measuring one lakh square feet and 300 artificial bathrooms for men and 125 bathrooms for women. Despite these arrangements, some societies have increased the security of their buildings and asked the guards to restrict outsiders from entering and using the common toilets in the society.
Commenting on security arrangements Dagdu Govind Powar, a police officer from Shivaji park police station said, "We are expecting around three to three and half lakh people to arrive at Shivaji Park this year and we have an arrangement for 500-600 police constables."
Fire brigade officials along with lifeguards and a speedboat will also be present at Dadar Chowpatty. A temporary accommodation pandal of 2000 square feet has been erected at Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar collage at Wadala. Enquiry counters have been set up at various places in Shivaji park, Dadar railway station and Lokmanya Tilak Terminus.
Traffic arrangements for December 6
On account of the 55th death anniversary of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar on December 6, traffic police will impose following restrictions from 8 pm on 05/12/2011 to 07/12/2011.
1) S K Bole road will be one way from Siddhivinayak Junction up to Hanuman Temple i.e. No Entry from Hanuman Temple.
2) Bhavani Shankar Road will be one way from Hanuman Temple/ Kabutar Khana up to its junction at Gokhale Road South i.e. no entry from Gokhale Road South
3) S V S Marg from Siddhivinayak Junction up to Hinduja Hospital will
be closed for Vehicular Traffic (residents can go up to Road No 5 i.e. Pandurang Naik Marg Junction from Hinduja Hospital)
4) Ranade Road will be closed for all types of vehicular traffic.
5) Dnyaneshwar Mandir Road will be closed for all types of vehicular traffic from its junction with S V S Road up to Dadar Chowpatty.
6) If necessary, the vehicular traffic, except BEST buses & Emergency and utility vehicles, will be closed from Dadar T T
7) Kataria Road will be closed for vehicular traffic from L J Road up to Hinduja Hospital.