Section 144 till September 19th
Not more than five people will be allowed to gather at a place in Mumbai till September 19th. Mumbai Police imposed the order to curb Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations. According to the new order, praying physically at public pandals has also been banned. However, the guidelines also state that for bringing home Ganesha idols and during their immersion, not more than 10 people will be allowed in public mandal processions and not more than five for household Ganpatis. Mandals falling in Covid-19 containment zones will have to make arrangements for immersion within pandal premises or postpone it. Those in sealed buildings will not be allowed to leave to join processions.
Noted feminist activist Sonal Shukla passes away
Born in Varanasi in 1941, Shukla was synonymous with not just Andheri’s Vacha Charitable Trust, but also India’s feminist movement. Vacha began in the 1980s as a library and resource center by a small group of women which included Sonal Shukla. Shukla went on to build Vacha to an organization focused on improving girls’ education and reducing dropout rates by providing support in various forms to young students. The library is seen in the community as an empowering space for working-class girls. There was also a study circle run at Vacha for women that also became a way to unburden themselves. Shukla also founded the Forum Against Oppression of Women, who remember her as “a fiery personality”, who enjoyed “street theatre and music [and] showed that feminism is serious and fun.”
Source: Indian Express
Commuters left in the lurch by BEST
Recent cancellation of 23 bus routes and curtailment of 45 others has caused immense complications for daily commuters in the city. The cancellations have also led to crowding in buses on other routes which could be of particular concern in the wake of a potential COVID-19 third wave. Commuters cite confusion as one of the main sources of distress. Ankush Nalawade told Times of India, ““Now that our regular bus routes have been scrapped, there is no one to guide us about the alternative routes.” Frequent travelers and commuter associations’ were not taken into consideration by BEST officials prior to implementing the plans.
Source: Times of India
Read more: Mumbai needs more BEST buses
Borivali fly-over cost to surge by 300%
On September 9th, BMC’s standing committee passed the proposal to extend the Borivali fly-over near Kora Kendra. The cost that was earlier approved has now been revised and increased by 300%. In 2018, the civic body had filed the construction cost of the extension as Rs 150 crore. In the middle of a pandemic with little relief provided in the form of financial packages or rent and loan moratoriums, the BMC has now adjusted the cost to Rs 650 crore. Officials claim this is because the original extension plan has also been revised to include another 860 metres up to the Western Express highway. Opposing voices have criticized the fact that no tenders were floated for the new project. The contractor hired earlier has been offered the additional extension work.