‘Closure order’ sends coaching hub into a tailspin


Mukherjee Nagar starts emptying out even as police deny issuing directive

Delhi’s Mukherjee Nagar area, a hub of private hostels and coaching centres, has been witnessing a gradual exodus of students since Tuesday. The police, claimed several owners of coaching centres and paying guest accommodations, had ordered them to shut up shop from December 25 to January 2.

The police appealed to everyone on Wednesday not to believe “rumours and fake videos” about the closure of PGs/hostels in the area. “We have registered a case against a fake video being circulated on social media and are also writing to the social media platform to remove it as the contents have been edited so as to place it out of context,” said DCP (North West) Vijayanta Arya.

The message has, however, spread and coaching centres and PG accommodations are closing for the year one after the other. A coaching centre owner, on condition of anonymity, said he was instructed by a local policeman citing “orders from top” to down shutters from December 25 to January 2.

Eateries and hang-outs near Batra Cinema were agog with discussions about the “police order”.

Students disappointed

Renu, a student from Haryana, said she came to know that policemen had landed up at her coaching centre on Tuesday evening and ordered it to close for a week from Wednesday. “It will be my loss. I don’t know why it has been done but surely it is not good,” she said.

Ms. Renu is staying put in Delhi, but another student, Chandra Mohan from Rajasthan, is returning home. “Even the private library in Mukherjee Nagar will remain closed for a week because of orders. My landlord has asked me to leave citing police orders,” he said.

Amit, who is preparing for SSC exam, said there are around 4,000 students in his batch and the coaching centre has told everyone not to come until January 2. “The staff said extra classes will be taken to make up for the loss,” he said.

Another student, Khushboo Verma, said the owner of the PG accommodation she stays in has exempted only those from south India and the Northeast since their home towns are far away. “All others have been asked to return home or shift to a relative’s place in the Capital,” she said.

A police officer said there are around 3.5 lakh students staying in localities in and around Mukherjee Nagar and enrolled in various coaching centres in the area. “The exercise was done to prevent students from getting involved in any kind of antisocial activity during New Year celebrations,” the officer said, claiming that the police had a tough time on New Year's Eve both last year and in 2017 because of the ruckus created by revellers.

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2020 6:44:58 PM |

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