Mumbai has no space for Anna

The biggest headache for Mumbai's civic authorities is that there is no space to host Anna Hazare. But does Mumbai really care?

Anant Rangaswami December 19, 2011 10:50:34 IST
Mumbai has no space for Anna

There’s no space for anything and anyone in Mumbai, not even for Anna Hazare. “The biggest headache for Mumbai's civic authorities is that there is no space to host Anna Hazare in this megapolis. The 'city of dreams', a concrete jungle now, has no open ground large enough to accommodate Anna's protest fast. Metaphorically speaking too, Mumbai's taste for Anna's style of confrontationist politics has long vanished. From its billionaires in sea-facing penthouses to the millions in chawls -- and the ten million in between -- the Jan Lok Pal is an alien entity. Having distanced itself from national level politics long ago, 'Think Local' is what now works in Mumbai,” says Mid-day.

In case you want to take your mind off Anna Hazare, this is worth a dekko. “The Navy will showcase its fleet at the Presidential Fleet Review 2011 to be held off the Mumbai coast on Tuesday. President Pratibha Devisingh Patil will take the salute from warships and aircraft at the event, which is considered as the naval version of the armed forces' grand display on Republic Day. The 81 warships to be displayed will include the country's lone aircraft carrier INS Viraat, Shivalak and Talwar class frigates, Kilo-class submarines and 10 vessels of the Coast Guard,” says The Hindu.

Mumbai has no space for Anna

People watch outside a shanty at the supporters of Anna Hazare at a rally against corruption in Mumbai. Reuters

It’s a cop, and he’s been caught before. “Constable Arvind Kadam, who was arrested on Saturday during a raid on a prostitution racket in Versova by the Social Service Branch (SSB), is not new to the business. His name had cropped up earlier in June, when SSB had raided a prostitution den being run under the guise of a massage parlour (DNA had first reported this). The concerned police sub-inspector of the Versova police station was asked for an explanation regarding why he had allowed the racket to continue under his nose,” says DNA.

More cops get caught. “A man who allegedly helped his chain-snatcher friend by disposing of a chain the latter had stolen got two policemen arrested after they demanded a bribe of Rs30000 from him. The two constables, identified as Nilesh Devrukhakar and Sukhdev Shegar alias Jigar of the detection staff in Borivli railway police, were demanding money from the victim (name withheld) for not arresting him in the case,” says DNA.

There’s a lot of money cops can make, and there’s no surprise that the demand for a job as a constable is huge. “The Maharashtra police force seems set to register various records through its recruitment drive this year.The biggest-ever recruitment procedure for 16,995 police constables has witnessed an overwhelming response with 5,98,608 applications from across the state. Of these, 67,372 are from women. Last year, 42,629 women had applied during the police recruitment drive,” says DNA.

The anti illegal meter drive seems to be working and that’s good news for commuters and for the coffers of the RTO. “The Road Transport Office's ongoing campaign against errant autorickshaw drivers is bearing fruit. In the fortnight since December 5, when the campaign started , RTO officials booked more than 500 drivers and slapped fines totalling Rs 12 lakh, the highest amount in fine imposed by the RTO in a two-week period. A source said the campaign has struck terror among auto drivers, who have flooded the 90 authorized meter servicing shops in the suburbs with requests to get tampered meters repaired,” reports Times of India.

And, in case you were worried about Veena Malik, she’s safe and sound – and found. “After reportedly going ‘missing’ on Friday, Pakistani actor Veena Malik’s manager on Sunday said she was staying at Hotel Oakwood in Juhu. Prateik Mehta said the actor was unwell for the past few days and wanted to rest without anyone knowing her whereabouts,” reports Indian Express.

Yes, it will get cooler again, says the Met. “The city experienced cooler conditions over the weekend with the Met department predicting a further decrease in temperatures over the next three to four days. After Wednesday’s unusually high night temperatures of 24.3°C at Colaba and 23°C at Santacruz, which were three and five degrees above normal respectively, the slide began on Thursday, with Colaba recording a minimum temperature of 22.5 degrees and Santacruz 19.5 degrees,” says Indian Express.

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