Civic body will make visarjan routes pothole-free in 2 days

Oppn criticises Mayor’s ‘tall claim’,says it is impossible to achieve the task

Written by Express News Service | Published:September 14, 2012 1:22 am

Oppn criticises Mayor’s ‘tall claim’,says it is impossible to achieve the task

After having failed to keep promises on making the roads pothole-free,the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Thursday announced that it will level the visarjan routes in 48 hours. Facing flak for the poor condition of roads ahead of the 10-day Ganeshotsav,Mayor Sunil Prabhu claimed that all potholes along these stretches will be adequately filled up in the next two days.

According to Prabhu,only 250 potholes on these stretches need to be filled up. “If the executive engineers feel that hot mix will work better than cold mix in some areas,I have asked them to use the old technique,” he said. But many in the municipal circle criticised the tall claim and said it is impossible to achieve the task. Samajwadi Party leader Raees Sheikh said,“The BMC is day-dreaming. It has lost the battle on the ground and is now trying to appease people.”

Chair professor of IIT’s civil engineering department S L Dhingra,who specialises in transportation systems engineering,said the feat would only be possible if the BMC assigned different stretches to dedicated groups. “At present,there is no mechanism to check if the work is done properly. For a long time now,the BMC has been considering a scheme of having different groups monitor a few kilometres of roads. If they have already given people this reasponsibility then it can be done,otherwise how can they do it?” said Dhingra.

MNS leader Dilip Lande,who presented the Mayor with a picture book of over 800 potholes on the Ganpati routes,said: “There are potholes all over the city; even in the Mayor’s ward and in front of the Shiv Sena Bhavan. Whatever the BMC is doing is not working. They have come up with this website and a centralised system,but it doesn’t function. The civic body has a hot mix centre at Worli that is unused because they decided to use the cold mix. If they do not repair the potholes on the Ganpati roads in two days we will take the matter into our own hands.”

Congress corporator and member of the standing committee Asif Zakaria said,“Since the start of the monsoon,people have been complaining about potholes. The civic body is supposed to spend around Rs 40 crore of the public money on this. Why should they wait until the cusp of a festival to do their job? Ganpati celebrations will take place on many roads and we can only imagine what is going to be the quality of pothole repairs. It looks like we will have to do another round of this quick fix before visarjan. This is sheer waste of public money.”

After raising the issue of potholes for over a month,Girish Walawalkar,secretary of the Brihanmumbai Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Samanvaya Samiti,said: “If the civic body wants to fill up all the potholes they certainly can,but they should want to do it. The corporation has the necessary material and technology and right now the rain will also not play truant.”

Walwalkar said the Mayor,during his visit to the visarjan spots on Thursday,knew about the bad roads and the condition of the areas. “He said these spots will be beautified. But right now,immersion sites at Juhu,Chowpatty,Dadar,Aarey and Mahim are in a very bad condition. A lot of garbage is strewn around and we are trying to clean up in time for the festivities,” he said.

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