Not everyone saying 'Marhaba Namo': poll


While several local business houses have reported giving their staff a day off or flexible working hours to attend the ‘Marhaba Namo’ public event today, a new ‘Emirates 24|7’ poll indicates many will still be poring over their desks at work to make it to the Dubai Cricket Stadium on time.

Forty-four per cent of respondents stated they will be at work, finding it ‘too difficult’ to reach the venue in time due to the restrictions in place.

Gates to the event are scheduled to open at 3pm today, with entry on first-come first-served basis for all those who have registered, with the PM’s speech scheduled for 8pm. The gates will close at 6.30pm.
Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) have routed public buses that are expected to shuttle 12,000-15,000 people to and from the stadium, with Mohammed Al Ali, director of buses, RTA, saying that Dubai Internet City Metro Station 1 will be the main hub where attendees can catch one of 40 double-decker shuttle buses that will run from 3pm until 7pm to ferry people to the venue.

After the main event ends, those shuttle buses will transport people back to the DIC metro station between 9pm and 10.30pm.

RTA has also confirmed that Dubai Metro timings will be extended to 11.52pm for Jebel Ali-bound trains.

Meanwhile, heat is also playing a damper for many, with the mercury expected to reach 45 degrees Celsius today.

Which is why 30 per cent of respondents to the poll further stated they prefer to spend the time at home, “where it is cool and comfortable and away from the crowds,” as one Dubai resident said.
Another 12 per cent of respondents further stated they will avoid the event, but will track Modi’s speech online, calling it “a matter of pride that an Indian Prime Minister is in UAE after 34 years.”

Only 10 per cent of poll respondents have confirmed they will be attending the ‘Marhaba Namo’ event, with Mahesh Kamath saying: “I plan on being at the Dubai Internet City Metro Station by 2.30pm so we are on the first of the buses to head towards the stadium.”

Another five per cent of pollsters stated they still were unsure whether they would attend the venue or not.

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