As one stands on the threshold of 2014, there is another chance to get it right. Whatever was done last year can be done better, writes J.S. Ifthekhar

Pop goes the cork. The effervescent liquid frothed into fluted glasses. Eyes lit up, conservation sparkled, laughter rang. A loud cheer went up as the clock chimed in the year 2014.

The hype and hoopla over the new year is always obsessive. Even the laid-back Hyderabadi works himself into a frenzy. Of course, the event managers, star hotels, pubs, resorts went overboard in wooing people with a whole lot of exotic things like music, dance, lucky draws, floor shows and discounts.

The great sickle of time completes its arc and moves on. But what does the new year portend for the ‘aam admi’? Will 2014 usher in a refreshing change? Will the economy bounce back? Will hunger and homelessness disappear? Will the job market look up?

There are no easy answers. One thing is certain — the political uncertainty will continue in the new year. So is the standoff over Telangana. The idea of Hyderabad being a common capital remains a sore point for some. At the same time many are buoyed by the creation of a new State and the benefits expected to flow.

The general elections too is round the corner and here’s a chance for citizens to put their mark on the electronic voting machines and bring the government they want to like. After all, Delhi has shown the way, isn’t it?

More challenges

For the city dwellers the challenges are more and on many fronts. For one, drinking water scarcity hangs like a Damocles sword – unless the promised Godavari project and phase III of Krishna project come through. But given the tardy pace of their execution one has to brace up for a summer of discontent again.

The last 12 months have been quite eventful. The Dilsukhnagar blasts, the prolonged Telangana stir, spate of bandhs, rallies and violent clashes between students and police have made it a tumultuous year. There is no solace to be drawn on the security front, particularly for the fair sex. There are too many chinks in the armour.

As regards other civic amenities too there is nothing to cheer about. The traffic muddle remains as chaotic as ever so are the bad roads and inadequate sewers plus storm water drains. The only silver lining is the brisk work on the Metro rail and hopes of the elevated rail providing fast and cheap travel in the days to come.

As one stands on the threshold of 2014, there is another chance to get it right. Whatever is done last year can be done better. Just go step by step, one day at a time. Learn from yesterday, live for today and hope for tomorrow.

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