Bush 'virus' hits Delhi
New Delhi, Mar 2: The whole of Delhi today seemed to have been hit by a Several small children missed school, those appearing for the 10th class CBSE examination reached their centres late while officegoers had a tough time reaching their workplaces as the traffic in the capital came to a "virtual standstill", with major roads like those leading to the India Gate, Connaught Place, Ring Road and Rajghat either closed to general traffic or having extremely slow movement of vehicles due to the various engagements of the US President and his wife.
Worsening the situation were the protest rallies by the Left parties and the Samajwadi party at the Ramlila ground as well as at Jantar Mantar.
With the traffic police having issued an advisory asking the general public to avoid the routes like India Gate, Connaught Place, the Ramlila grounds between 1000 Hrs and 1600 hrs today, several people did not send their children to school in anticipation of traffic jams.
Consequently, buses ferrying children to schools, specially located in the Central Delhi areas as well as those in Noida ran empty.
Among the school students who did venture out, a majority were those appearing for the CBSE class 10th exams, most of whom had a tough time reaching their examination centres despite setting out earlier than usual. In view of the expectd traffic bottlenecks today, the CBSE had provided for allowing entry to those coming late for the exams.
The worse affected in the "traffic logjam" caused by the the US president's visit were the officegoers, specially those coming from the trans-Yamuna areas. The numerous traffic restrictions and several traffic diversions resulted in many of the people reaching their workplaces late by one to three hours.
Said Kapil Batra, an IT executive working with Siemens in Connaught Place,''I left for office at about 0930 hours from my house in Mayur Vihar Phase II. Usually it takes me just about 30 minutes to reach office but thanks to the several traffic logjams on the route to Connaught Place, I reached office well after 1100 Hours.''
Infact, those from the Trans-Yamuna areas having their offices in Connaught Place found themselevs taking an inordinately long route to reach their offices in view of the traffic restrictions in the India Gate and Connaught Place. ''I had to reach my office at Barakhamba Road via Ashram and the Lodhi Road areas as the entry to India Gate and Mandi House had been closed by the traffic police,''Ramesh Sharma, a marketing executive said.
Seeing the traffic jams and huge posse of policemen at every nook and corner of the city, many a common man were seen wondering what had hit Delhi to result in such a massive traffic chaos.
''Itna bandobast to gantantra divas par bhi kabhi nahin dekha.
Kya yeh bush hamare pradhan mantri se bhi badi shaksiyat hai (such a security is not seen even during the Republic Day. Is this Bush even a bigger personality than our Prime Minister and the President),''wondered Ram Sharan, a daily wager making his way to his workplace in Old Delhi.
Talking about the situation, Prakash Batra, a bus conductor said,''itna bandobast to Clinton ke yahan aane par bhi nahi tha.
South dilli main rehne walon ko to kuch farak nahin padega par trans-Yamuna main rehne walon ko aaj bahut dikkat ho rahi hai kyonki sare raste par traffic police walon ne block kar rakhs hai (such security apparatus was not seen even during the visit of US President Bill Clinton. People coming to South Delhi will not be affected as they can take alternative routes to reach their offices.
The worst affected are those living in the Trans-Yamuna areas as the traffic policemen have blocked all routes leading from the trans-Yamuna to the Central Delhi area.'' The only people who were perhaps unaffected by all this