Being a diehard Punekar, hearing criticism, even positive criticism at that, is a bit tough. However, if we truly love Pune, then we need to look at what we need to work on in order to grow and prosper.
2018 was a good year for our city in a lot of aspects. Punekars made the city proud in the national as well as the international scene; our infrastructure and IT hubs were noticed even more. New culinary improvements, a metro project underway, technical advancements, have all put Pune in the promise land. However, without bragging too much and then turning a convenient blind eye to inadequacies, let us look at the changes Pune desperately needs in 2019!
Although 2018 saw the youth getting involved in more and more activities, the government administration is sorely lacking any kind of youth involvement. With the perspective of the most important group of the society amiss, some changes need to be implemented in order to cover all the aspects of developments.
Yes, I know, this a can of worms I’m opening here, but there needs to be some sort of attention directed towards environment. The traffic pollution around the IT hubs keeps getting worse, and waste management is still a laughable concept in the city.
Although a smart city and a metropolitan, we are still desperately lacking advanced infrastructure in the core parts of the city. Roads are still perpetually damaged, especially during monsoon, and the two tragedies – the hoarding falling near the RTO and the Dandekar Bridge pipe burst just shows the carelessness which causes massive damage. More pavements, better quality of wider roads, are just the basics of good infrastructure we still lack in so many huge localities in Pune.
Migration is at an all-time high, and in some scenarios, this might have been a positive development. However, this migration isn’t being managed right, and its leading to civic unrest and a steady rise in illegal slums in many areas. Despite being a large city, we still find a congested lifestyle in some parts, migration is an important reason for that.
I know I should give the Metro project the benefit of doubt, and I will when it starts, but as of now, Pune desperately lacks good public transport. The rise in vehicles is sourced from this issue, which rapidly gives birth to all sorts of problems. The green bicycles did help to a certain extent, and let’s hope they are promoted more in 2019.
Punekars have always been proud and to be honest, it’s the reason why we have developed so much. However, there’s a certain arrogance which has now attached itself to this pride, where we refuse to see the bigger picture for our own selfish reasons. Yes, our government can account for some of the problems, but we, as residents, need to account for our shortcomings too. A general lethargy when it comes to following rules, as well as a taken-for-granted attitude towards civic duties and amenities is harming the entire city.