Civic agencies in Delhi have put their best foot forward to beautify the national capital for the G20 Summit even as a battle for credit has caused some controversy in the lead-up to the mega event.
From fountains to statues, floral decorations to flags — the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC), public works department (PWD) and the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) undertook a slew of initiatives to decorate the national capital.
The public works department redesigned road stretches to European standards.
These redesigned road stretches include an area of the Ring Road from the airport to Central Delhi, Aurobindo Marg, Vikas Marg, Lodhi Road and Rajghat that will not only extend a warm welcome to the G20 guests but also remain as enduring infrastructure landmarks in Delhi, PWD Minister Atishi said earlier.
“In total, 10 new roads have been laid across key areas for the G20 (Summit), encompassing Bhairon Marg, Purana Quila Road, Ulan Batar Marg, Mathura Road, Mehrauli Badarpur Road, JB Tito Marg, IP flyover to the Hanuman Setu area on Ring Road, Mall Road to the Kingsway Camp area, Netaji Subash Chandra Marg, and IP flyover to the Bhairon Marg area on Ring Road,” Atishi had said.
Besides road development, extensive beautification work has been carried out by the Delhi government. These include the installation of 31 statues and 90 fountains on public works department roads, the planting of 1.65 lakh plants and the installation of decorative lighting, among others, she had said.
Installations include a Konark wheel at Delhi Gate, a dancing idol at the y-point near Gulab Vatika on Ring Road and eight six-feet-high Apsara sculptures on the Hanuman Mandir Junction, according to officials.
The public works department has also beautified 23 flyovers, including the ones at Lodhi Road, Chirag Delhi, IIT, Panchsheel and Moti Bagh, they said.
Even as a war of words raged over the allocation of funds, Lt Governor VK Saxena told PTI in an interview last week that the expenditure incurred was not much. The artefact and the fountains were gifted by companies under their Corporate Social Responsibility.
The MCD has put up 450 banners bearing images of the Red Fort, Humayun’s Tomb, Lotus Temple and other iconic heritage sites of Delhi to welcome the heads of state and other delegates.
These large banners, also bearing the G20 logo, the theme “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” — “One Earth. One Family. One Future” — and a welcome message, have been put up largely on unipoles that usually carry advertisements.
As part of the MCD’s beautification drive, murals depicting the cultural heritage of India, as well as the successful soft landing of Chandrayaan-3 on the Moon, have been painted on public walls.
The NDMC has begun work on the preparation and installation of 20 flower boards prominently displaying the G20 logo and slogan at strategic locations. Thousands of trees in high-traffic areas to be frequented by the guests will be decorated with flowers for the main events.
The NDMC has beautified its roads, footpaths, roundabouts, markets, flyovers and public areas with over a lakh potted plants.
Even private agencies have put up hoardings for the mega event.
Burjeel Holdings, one of the largest health care service providers in the MENA region, has put up hoardings featuring UAE astronaut Sultan al Neyadi.
These hoardings serve as a reminder of the spirit of international cooperation that continues to drive advancements in scientific endeavours, it said in a statement.
“We are proud to honour his (al Neyadi) achievements through this tribute, which serve as a symbol of the strong bond between the UAE and India,” it added.
The G20 Leaders’ Summit will be held on September 9-10. The summit is likely to be attended by more than 30 heads of state and top officials from the European Union and invited guest countries and 14 heads of international organisations.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)