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|Idiot Planning (standard:non fiction, 1322 words)|
|Author: Juggernaut||Added: Oct 27 2010||Views/Reads: 1420/755||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|An essay on beuracratic bungling experiences in a developing country.|
IDIOT PLANNING Subba Rao A sewer treatment plant built on the beach front road, where it could be? In Vizag, a large metropolitan city in South India with a population over 2 million. “Whose idea was that?” inquired Juggernaut. “Don't ask me, I only work here,” replied the irritated lady engineer working at the plant. Then she calmed down, “Well, the planning engineers thought, a sewer treatment plant closer to beach would facilitate easy discharge of treated sewer deep into the sea. “Have they considered about possible stink from the sewage treatment at the beach and numerous homes around?” “”You ask them,” the engineer shot back and walked away. “Constructing a sewage treatment plant near the beach, that's a real idiot planning, all right,” thought Juggernaut, walking slowly from the stinking plant at the beach which was shut down temporarily from operational problems after spending millions. “I am wondering if you have old records on the huge underground sewer pipe line project from 1964?” asked Juggernaut. The respondent, an old bureaucrat working in the City of Vizag public works Department raised his head and looked at Juggernaut as if he was looking at an alien creature. “I am talking about a project on which the City spent millions on laying underground drainage pipe lines in mid 1960's, since then never brought into operation,” asked Juggernaut. “Sir, I have been working here since 1970 and nobody mentioned about that project,” the bureaucrat was calm. “Then what happened to those pipe lines and why it is not in operation?” “I have no clue and you have to ask my supervisor who came on board only few years ago,” the bureaucrat threw a curve ball. The underground drainage project in mid 1960's after years of spending millions in digging and laying pipe lines was abandoned and forgotten without even putting to use, why? Nobody in the Public Works Department even aware of the existence of underground drainage pipes in the area. After waiting hours to meet the bureaucrats to get answers, Juggernaut left the office building asking himself “what kind of idiot planning was all that about?” The city's oldest college with prestigious name was in ruins in some sections. Roof was partially collapsed in some class rooms. The college auditorium is now an abandoned building with vegetation took over the structure. Dust to dust. Squatters occupied the college play grounds and turned into a slum. During a visit to the college after several decades, Juggernaut confronted one of the officials in the college on the condition of the buildings. “You know this college operates on a private trust money with some assistance from the government, we can hardly pay the salaries to the staff and no money to maintain the infra-structure,” said a tired looking man sitting in a dark dingy office room. During all these years of decline and decay, had the board of trustees made any attempts to get funding from other sources; say donations from the college alumni, many now successful entrepreneurs, the situation could have been better. Now the dilapidated buildings, some beyond repair look more like an archeological ruins rather than a school in operation. Idiot thinking or what? Click here to read the rest of this story (78 more lines)
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