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Passage : 3
A.1 Read the passage given below and write the options that you consider the most appropriate.
May 31, 1999 was one the darkest days in Old Delhi’s living memory. A fire that started in shop 898 of Shahjahanabad’s Lal Kuan chemical market quickly swept through the stree, claiming 57 lives. It wasn’t the first chemicals related disaster in the area - the trade’s hub of Lal Kuan-Khari Baoli-Tilak Bazar had already witnessed two major fires in 1987 and 1996 - but the scale of this tregedy shook everyone, the government included. Soon, orders came for the chemical traders to move out to Holambi Kalan, near Narela Industrial Area on the city’s northwestern periphery. In 2006, even the paper merchants of Chawri Bazaar got an ultimatum to relocate to Ghazipur due to fire safety concerns. But so far, not a single chemical or paper trader has moved out of the tiderbox that is Old Delhi.
Why? Traders say the conditions at the new sites are not conducive for business. For instance, paper merchants say, the Integrated Freight complex (IFC), Ghazipur, where they are supposed to move has poor infrastructure and inadequate security. So, five years after Delhi Development Authority allotted plots to 621 traders, they continue to operate out of Chawri Bazaar and only 250-odd have started construction in Ghazipur. Chemical traders, too, are resisting relocation to Holambi Kalan for similar reasons. “The place is a jungle. There are no roads, streetlights, water pipelines, sewerage and security. Most of us don’t even know which piece of land belongs to us. Land has been transferred only on paper,” said Shyam Sunder Gupta, general secretary, Chemical Market Association. So far, plots have been allotted to 639 of the 883 chemical traders found eligible in the 1999 survey.
For traders who feel secure amidst old associates and the tightly packed warrens of these old markets, a move to the spacious new sites seems fraught with risk. “Traders keep lakhs of rupees with them. At least nobody can rob us of our hard earned money here,” said Pradeep, a, chemical merchant. “There are no arrangements for security (at the new sites). In our warehouses, we have goods worth lakhs of rupees. How can we leave them there,” said Prem Prakash, who paid Rs 161akh for a 98sqm plot in Ghazipur.
Batting for the traders, area MP and human resource development minister, Kapil Sibal, said it is unfair to ask traders to move to the outskirts without providing them facilities. “The matter “has been pending for a long time. I have asked - the Union urban development minister to expedite the process so that the area (Walled City) can be decongested and redeveloped. We can’t ask people to move to an area where basic amenities are missing,” said Sibal.
Notwithstanding orders of the government and the high court to move wholesale trades out of the old city, the number of establishments has only increased over the years. According to a conservative estimate, paper merchants have increased by 15-20 %, and chemical merchants by 20-30% since the relocation orders were issued.
“The number of paper traders has increased considerably since 2006. DDA is yet to provide plots to nearly 300-odd traders. What will happen to the new traders?” said Mahesh Shah, president of Paper Merchants’ Association. Chemical traders, too, have similar concerns. “They have allotted plots based on a survey done in 1999-2000. The market has grown a lot in the last 11 years,” said Gupta.
As per Master Plan of Delhi-2021, Municipal Corporation of Delhi is responsible for stopping expansion of wholesale markets and commercial activity in Shahjahanabad, but MCD officials themselves admit there is rampant commercialization in the area. Even as hazardous businesses mushroom in the densely inhabited Walled City, MCD has washed its hands of the relocation process. Traders of the chemical market allege the MCD has refused to issue them building plans, passing the buck to DDA instead.
A. After Shahjahanabad’s 1999 fire disaster, the chemical traders were ordered to ....
i) close down their units
ii) compensate the victims and their families
iii) shift to Holambi Kalan near Narela
iv) upgrade their fire fighting systems
B. The anthor has described old Delhi as ‘tinderbox’ because it ill houses.
i) spicy chinese food stores
ii) substances prone to catching fire
iii) electronic gadgets
iv) chandni chowk’s chat outlets
C. The traders are reluctant to move out to new sites because they do not find the new destinations .....
i) suitable for their business
ii) approachable from Delhi
iii) hygienic and safe
iv) beyond land acquisition disputes
D. The local MP also believes that it would be difficult for traders to move to the new sites unless .....
i) customers are made available to them
ii) facilities are provided in these sites
iii) the govt pays the traders enough compensation
iv) the traders get accustomed to new locations.
Please refer to attached file for CBSE Class 11 English Reading Passage 3
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