As vehicular traffic returns to Bengaluru roads after the long Covid-19 lockdown, faulty streetlights are turning out to be a danger for commuters in parts of the city.
The stretch from Silk Board to Bellandur on the Outer Ring Road (ORR) is poorly illuminated, with almost no light switched on post-sunset. “The commute across this six-km stretch becomes difficult in the evenings, as nearly all lights, except some next to flyovers and service roads, stay off. Potholes add to the misery, putting two-wheeler riders at risk,” Abdul Asif, a research assistant who is a daily user of the road, said.
Asif added that with lights from other vehicles the main source of illumination, high beams from across the road blind two-wheeler riders. “Even though there is a divider with reflector lights, they are placed very low, failing to cut the high-beam rays from vehicles travelling in the opposite direction,” he explained.
Gayatri M, a freelance voice artist who travels daily from Silk Board to Banashankari, said the situation worsens on rainy days. “Lights from makeshift shops along the side of the road help us avoid potholes. With these vendors absent on rainy days, the commute becomes more challenging,” she said.
Krishna Kumar, who travels daily to Ecospace from JP Nagar, pointed out some streetlights stopped working after they were shifted to the other side of the road due to the ongoing metro construction. “We have been promised by BBMP officials of the Bommanhalli Zone that the issue will be rectified soon,” he said.
When contacted, an official of the Bangalore Development Authority said short-term tenders have been invited to place new streetlights along ORR. “This will facilitate the working of existing streetlights, and provide new LED lights at 80-ft and 100-ft main roads at various junctions in Banashankari 6th Stage. High mast lights will also be provided at major junctions,” the official said, citing a call for tender issued earlier this month.
The official also urged citizens to use the BBMP Sahaya application to file complaints, by uploading pictures related to the concerns raised.
A recent public notification issued by the BBMP said it in case of pothole-related accidents, it will pay Rs 10,000 for injuries that require treatment of more than three days and Rs 5,000 to those sustaining minor injuries. The compensation in case of death due to potholes will be up to Rs 3 lakh.
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