Gurugram: At a time when large parts of Gurugram are facing power outages of average two to three hours, the defunct street lights are adding to the misery of city dwellers. During pre-monsoon and monsoon showers, large parts of the city that include New, Gurugram as well as the Old Gurugram, remained in the dark as the street lights were not functional. It is also noteworthy that the street lights often do not function when there is power supply in and around the area.
A substantial amount of budget has been allocated to make the Millennium city brighter with the installation of LED street lights, but it seems that various limitations are preventing this scheme to become a major success. Even as the public agencies been successful in installing the lights, the Millennium city almost continues to be in dark as most of it has become dysfunctional. In certain stretches like Sukhrali and Sheetala Mata Road, there have also been incidents where the street lights have been disfigured and the lights have been stolen.
Moreover, there have also been complaints that in Sikanderpur underpasses also on various occasions, the street lights are not functional. Such is the poor condition of street lights in the city that even two kilometer stretch of 'Mall Mile' remains a dark stretch even during weekends when there is a large number of people throng the area.
The presence of dark spots in Gurugram is adding to the dangers of working women in the city who have to travel during night time. Not only are the women but even the commuters face problems as major areas in the city where there is a high movement of traffic continue to be in dark even after the street lights being there. A major cause for the rising thefts and snatching incidents in the city is also being blamed for the non-functional street lights in the city. Areas in the city like Gurugram – Faridabad road, Golf Course Road, Golf Course extension road, Udyog Vihar, Sector 23 and Sector 10 face the problem of non-functional streetlights.
As many as five government agencies are in charge of the maintenance of street lights in different parts of the city. These are the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram (MCG), Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA), Haryana State Industrial and Infrastructure Development Corporation (HSIIDC) and Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (DHBVN) and Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA). Yet the problem of poor street lighting continues to be a major challenge in the city.
Most of the Resident Welfare Associations (RWAs) highlight that lack of a centralised body in the maintenance is resulting in the poor upkeep of street lighting in the city. "All the complaints received by MCG are worked upon by our officials instantly. Areas like Gurgaon – Faridabad Road, Golf Course Road, where the street lights are non-operational, are not in our control. HUDA sectors like Sector 29 and Sector 54 which have poor street lighting are not under our control," said a senior official from MCG.