Delhi plan for Trump: 10,000 flower pots, keeping strays away

Ananya Tiwari
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Workers paint road medians near Rashtrapati Bhavan, Friday. Praveen Khanna

Around 10,000 flower pots, cleaning of roads, floral boards at roundabouts as well as keeping away stray dogs and monkeys — these are among the steps being taken by the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) as part of a beautification drive to welcome US President Donald Trump and his family next week.

“Working with the Central Public Works Department, the NDMC horticulture department has been given the task of maintaining hygiene and cleanliness of Rashtrapati Bhavan,” said S Chellaiah, Director of Horticulture, NDMC.

“We have been told to procure 3,500 flower pots for the Bhavan, and will get over 10,000 pots for the beautification as well,” he said.

As per the plan, over 10,000 pots of tulips, ornamental kale, petunias and multi-colour

hybrid dahlias will also be placed at Hyderabad House, which is where the delegations will hold talks.

Additionally, floral boards will also be put up, reflecting the ties binding India and US, and flowers will also be used to beautify various spots, especially roundabouts, along the route that will be taken by the entourage.

NDMC has also been tasked with removing garbage and carrying out mechanical sweeping of roads. “We also have to make sure that no stray dogs or monkeys come along the route,” said Chellaiah. He said the NDMC has to ensure uninterrupted power and water supply during Trump’s visit.

US President Trump and his wife Melania Trump will be ceremonially welcomed at the forecourt of the Rashtrapati Bhavan on February 25, after which they will visit the Gandhi Samadhi at Rajghat. This will be followed by delegation-level talks at Hyderabad House.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will then host the lunch, and Trump is expected to attend meetings at the US Embassy with industry representatives.

In the evening, the US President will meet President Ram Nath Kovind at Rashtrapati Bhavan, and both will also host a banquet later.

Trump will stay at the ‘Chanakya’ suite of ITC Maurya, which has hosted the likes of former US presidents George Bush and Barack Obama.

On security arrangements in the capital, Delhi Police spokesperson M S Randhawa said, “Commissioner of Police Amulya Patnaik held a meeting Friday with traffic and local police about arrangements for Trump’s visit.”

A police officer said, “We are also coordinating with the US Secret Service.”