Delhi is now one of the best cities in the world, declared Chief Minister, Sheila Dikshit. She claimed that the national capital is now rated among the best cities in the world. One does not get the idea as to what criteria she had used for her analysis but let us look at some recent reports of civic facilities available to Delhiites..

 

Delhi has been reported to be the world’s 5th worst city in terms of traffic congestion. Just recently the two departments which have the maximum interface with the public, the Delhi Police and Municipal Corporation of Delhi, were also reported to be the most corrupt,

 

And one hopes to hear the answers to all the questions raised in the  “CWG scam’ and to the accusations pointing towards the Delhi government, with or without the CM.

 

Just a few months ago, Ms. Dikshit had claimed that Delhi is the safest city in India and added that law and order situation had improved in the national capital quite significantly in the last one year.

 

There are others who beg to differ and it is not the public alone. According to, no less a person than the Delhi Police Commissioner Y.S. Dadwal himself, crime is rising in Delhi. While reporting a decline in heinous crimes such as murder, attempt to murder, robbery, rioting and rape by 2.97 percent as compared to previous year, he did admit that there was a sharp increase in kidnappings, motor vehicle thefts, fatal road accidents and crimes against senior citizens in Delhi in 2009, with the total criminal cases registered increasing by over one percent during the year.

 

It is unfortunate that the capital of India has also attained such dubious tags as the ‘crime capital’ or the ‘rape capital’. But to blame it as a political propaganda of opponents, is a blatant refusal to admit the fact that Delhi had topped crime charts for fifth year in a row.

 

And it adds very little to one’s comfort to read that Delhi police’s crime-solving rate is dipping. Delhi has been described as a city ruled by women, but unsafe for them. Delhi got the distinction in recent times as the most unsafe place for women with highest rate of crime against the weaker sex. Moreover the Chief Minister earlier had dragged herself into trouble for her moralistic stance and comment that ‘one should not be adventurous’ after the unfortunate late night murder incidence of the journalist, Soumya Vishwanathan,

 

It is ironic that just a week ago, the CM of the ‘safest city’ should appeal to all BPOs, media houses, hospitals to provide safe transportation for late working women to go back home in the evening.

One can understand all the efforts of whitewashing and making Delhi presentable to the international community. One can also claim some success on the fact that the CWG went relatively uneventful in terms of safety issues, though that has been rightly overshadowed by the corruption issues that tarnished the country’s image.

 

But before making tall claims, one has to realize that it is a long way before the public perception will change and deceptive statements and half truths will not help in accelerating the process. 

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