The Capital City We Live In

Who has hit the city, neither you nor I,
Only those at the helm for 75 years, with vested interests;
Allowed rampant growth,  let it grow out of control;
Are they only responsible, others silently watched its decay?
A concrete jungle, now a dead city.
Temperatures soaring as never before!
The Capital City, its sufferings so profuse;
Haphazard growth, in confluence with cities all around;
Forming an “Enclave” with cities about;
Habitation through and through, no gaps in between;
Chaotic, abnormal, illogical its growth has been;
Competence of its developers, indecisive has been.
It is Capital City, then what, must it only grow?
There need to be limits to its growth,
Else create, be a cause of chaos!
How could the expectation grow so wild like this?
Is it normal or abnormal growth?
What are the reasons for its growth?
How much area is this of the Nation?
Is it the only city that must grow?
Already crammed, why let others in;
Adding close to a million per year,
Can the city afford to take any more?
The vultures out there, use freebies to lure influx;
Are there other considerations directing its growth?
The state of the huge river, a sacred one;
On the bank of which the city has been!
Status is of sewer, during its lean days;
No aquatic life it sustains, no remorse;
Now much across it, the city has grown.
Then why the hell is it growing further?
Horizontal spread no more, begins vertical now;
Fill up yours, let some slip in mine,
Respecting mutual growth, began growing on its own?
Interested parties letting it outgrow!
Limits to sustain life, at its zenith;
Two storey flats to four, now many more;
Dangerous to have more, being in Seismic Zone IV,
Study said so some thirty years ago,
Skyscrapers coming up fast, challenges ahead;
Not afraid of warnings declared years ago!
Brimming up with vehicles all over,
Collecting taxes,  profitable to the state;
Parking facilities insufficient still must pay challan;
Chaotic traffic flows, accidents many more;
No worry, ‘trauma centers’ coming up fast.
Are we really proud of the fact?
‘‘The most polluted city in the World”,
Unburden it; take the factories off it now;
Banished by the Courts long ago?
Forgotten, waiting for revised orders.
Claimed to be the greenest City, with lots and lots of trees;
Many diseased,  to be pruned, no care, are on their own;
Care selective, work selective, working wilfully unburdened;
Overgrown trees, lots of them, posing problems in plenty.
Buildings built, now demolished, over and again;
No time to check, if stayed its lifetime;
Shear lust to make more, big-time money at stake;
 Got them down much before time.
What a trash made of structures perfect,
Debris cannot be part of soil again,
Unusable to build structures, the glue effect is lost;
Everyone knows, know not-not interested to know,
Failure to implement building bye-laws!
Neither makes good ones nor interested.
Despite knowing all they should, the future is not in mind;
Laws to save the environment, keep it clean and right;
Never given thought of, pure growth for sure;
Enjoy financial gains, heavens to care of else.
From a green, less developed in ’50s;
Concrete jungle, its new glory;
Check population census,  when things had gone awry;
Travesty of facts, new problems after 47.
New Delhi was built then, still going strong;
Thought and planning so perfect,
After a century, still open enough, lively;
An area about 5 miles in circle, place most liveable.
Other places developed much later,
Dungeons created, filth everywhere;
Mountains of filth surround all over!
Difficult for those, seen it grow to its slow death,
Now in their nineties, pray all those at the helm;
Take decisions, still time, before it gets out of hand.
Four lakhs at the beginning of the 20th Century,
Thirteen by 1950, having grown three times;
At three crores today, a figure to be afraid of;
Penned down, for everyone to know, not universally known.
Consider it part of your motherland,
How much more could it take, now well beyond its limits;
Tentacles of growth or decay spread all around,
Engulfed villages within, vacuoles thus created;
Serving as it serves in cells, dumping ground of wastes!
Bubble of growth reached its zenith,
Liable to burst someday, not far away;
Population density over 30000 per square mile,
One of the highest in the World,
Need know-no more, to know its state of health;
One look and say, “Looks like a mega slum”.
Pointing anticipated miseries, better in many ways;
Gives time to act, and mitigate them, only if you can;
Selectively see, selectively hear, hardly any problem.
Won’t be right, look, hear, do only right;
Hook it out of its deadlock, carve its future right;
Staying bright and prosperous, take it right in your hands!
~Dr. Rajesh Chauhan
New Delhi, India


  1. Rajesh Kumar Bhardwaj

    The capital city we live in
    A great effort to show the misery of the city.
    Delhi, the capital of India where 750 slums area lies, 400 are on DDA land, the government land. It is all possible with the help of politicians, Municipal officials, police and indirectly protection from judiciary. No one can alter personal property without permission of DDA or Municipal Corporation but can easily encroach public property ,the property of tax payers. Where should tax payers complaint, report or appeal. No court ready to hear the appeal of common man.
    Sir, your efforts are valuable about the city.

  2. Harinder Singh Bedi

    Amazing true words …time to start correcting

  3. Every Word is so true for the capital city,,