More than a month ago, senior representatives of the South Delhi Municipal Corporation had announced that the science museum at R.K. Puram would be renamed in memory of the 23-year-old girl who was sexually assaulted on a bus on December 16 last year.
Former Delhi Bharatiya Janata Party president Vijender Gupta, who was part of the press conference along with the girl’s family, had said the museum will be called the ‘Braveheart …Science Museum’ and will be proof that the girl changed society for the better. The BJP representatives had assured that the museum will be revamped at a cost of between Rs. 18 and Rs. 20 crore and will be ready by the end of this fiscal (March 31).
Yet, little has changed at the chosen museum -- the Children’s Resource Centre at R.K. Puram Sector-6 -- with renovations far from having begun. A visit by The Hindu to this single-storey building last month revealed that extensive work was needed to revamp the facility with numerous signs that read: “This corner has been proposed for renovation.”
Mr. Gupta had said last week that he hopes the project will be completed very soon.
“Since the BJP is in majority in all three Corporations, we had taken a policy decision with implementation to be carried out by the South Corporation,” he said, referring the matter to the SDMC representatives.
While the proposal to rename the facility has been approved by the House, work on revamping it has not begun yet, said SDMC Leader of House Subhash Arya, adding that it will begin by the second week of April.
“A government agency has been chosen to renovate the premises but work has not yet started,” he said.
It was unclear where the renovation funds will come from, with no provision having been made in the Corporation’s budget for the same.
However, a senior official of the SDMC said the process of identifying a suitable firm to carry out renovations is still underway.
“The renovations will be carried out under the PPP model of build-operate-transfer,” he said.
Mr. Arya said, “We had decided to name the museum after the girl since there was a lot of public outrage around the issue [gang-rape]. In the past, we have named our roads and community centres after freedom fighters and Kargil martyrs. Similarly, we thought of naming the museum after the girl.”