The refurbished area of Chandni Chowk will be open to the public from the first week of November as a non-motorized zone during the day, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal who visited the area on Thursday, said. A 1.3 km stretch has been under redevelopment since December 2018. The initial deadline for the Chandni Chowk pedestrianization and beautification project was March 21, 2020, but later it was extended till May. Now the Delhi Chief Minister has announced that the area will be opened to the public in November.
This area will be declared a non-motorized zone from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. The budget for the whole project is around Rs 90 crore.
While inspecting the area with PWD minister Satyendar Jain, Kejriwal said, "The area of Chandni Chowk is a historical place, we will restore its old glory once again. We expect that more tourists will visit this area after redevelopment".
The project is moving at a slow pace since October when the Supreme Court banned construction activities in Delhi and NCR due to the rise in the air pollution level. The work had come to a complete halt after the lockdown was announced due to the coronavirus pandemic. Construction work resumed in May but the scarcity of workers, who had returned to their native places, meant it couldn't pick up the required speed, officials said.
A section of traders is also protesting against the decision to make it a non-motorized area.
Delhi BJP Spokesperson Praveen Shankar Kapoor has written to Arvind Kejriwal asking him to reconsider the decision to make it a non-motorized area as this is a commercial as well as a residential place.