Potholes still dot Bengaluru roads as Palike sleeps over deadline

Potholes still dot Bengaluru roads as Palike sleeps over deadline

Submitted by alvin on Tue, 2016-04-05 10:17 Bengaluru: It has been three days since the deadline (March 31) to fill up potholes went past. Bengaluru In-charge Minister KJ George had promised to make Bengaluru free of potholes. While Bruthat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike has been claiming that it had finished asphalting projects on city roads three months ago, a reality check done by Bfirst, tells a different story.Documents available with Bfirst show Palike has failed to fill all potholed roads – about 845 more potholes to be filled in 268 major roads. About 30 per cent of potholes are still in arterial, sub-arterial and service roads in 198 wards.When asked about what delayed the work, District In-charge Minister KJ George claimed, “Majority of the work is over and very soon our target will be achieved.”However, KT Nagaraj, Chief Engineer Major Roads, BBMP said, “Total number of roads identified for the work are 268. This consists both arterial and sub- arterial roads. Tenders were awarded for 229, remaining will be called soon. So far the work on 74 Roads have been completed".It may be recalled here that last year on September 18, a 25-yea-old techie Stuthi Pandey died after her husband Om Prakash Triparti rode into an unavoidable pothole. A case is registered in HAL Old Traffic Airport Police Station and BDA engineer under whose jurisdiction falls the Daverbeesanahalli flyover where the accident took place.In August, 9-year-old Likhit Gowda died when his mother Sunitha swerved her two-wheeler to avoid a huge pothole in Yeshwantpur. Likhith who fell down was fatally knocked down by a speeding bus from behind.Following a public demand to address killer potholes on city roads, Rs 417 crore was allocated last year under Nagarothana grant from the government, said Nagaraj.MR Venkatesh, Engineer-In-Chief, BBMP blamed unexpected work on stormwater drains and primary drains for causing the delay in fixing the potholes. “So for 110kms has been covered on 74 roads. Remaining roads will be asphalted before the onset of monsoon," he added.In terms of ward wise, it still has to cover 30 percent potholes in West zone, 37 percent in Yelahanka Zone, 25 percent RR Nagar Zone, 15 percent each in East and Bommanahalli. However, 98 per cent of potholes have been covered in Dasarahalli alone, according to a report by engineer-in-chief.Opposition leader Padmanabha Reddy who recently took BBMP to task over clearance of contractors’ bills to fix potholes using Python, said the machine was an utter waste and now it is not to be seen anywhere. Despite raising objection, the Palike cleared the bills, he rued. However, Mayor clarified that the contract was awarded during BJP’s rule and Congress only cleared the bill.But will the Palike’s quick-fix measure to fix potholes sustain the onset of monsoon? "One light shower is enough to expose BBMP's quality of works. The quality of work need to be monitored and any substandard work, contractor should be penalised. But this seldom happens in Palike and they revel only in blame game than being committed,” said Sridhar Pabbisetty, expert on urban governance Expert.·       Number of potholes on major roads that consists both arterial and sub-arterial roads.·       East- 47 roads and 954 filled and 200 are remaining.·       West-23 roads- 444 filled-53 remaining.·       South-37 roads-227 filled-29 remaining.·       Dasarahalli-28 roads-276 filled- 51 pending.·       Bommanahalli-11 roads-160 filled and 273 pending.·       RR Nagar-20 roads-359 filled- and 38 pending.·       Mahadevpura-15 roads-137 filled and 91 remaining.·       Yelhanka-19 Roads-550 filled and 101 remaining. The Palike has identified and fixed 3,156 potholes and 845 more pending.Manjunath Reddy, an auto driver told Bfirst.in that whenever he takes customers on RT Nagar stretch he is extra cautious. “If a patient had to travel on RT Nagar stretch after a surgery, he/she is sure to suffer infection as the stitches on wounds would leave open,” he said.Stating that not Palike has never adhered to deadline, Rekha Kadiresh, corporator, Chalavadipalya ward obseverd "The district in-charge Minister KJ George had promised pothole-free roads by March end but it is hard to find a stretch without a crater. It’s a shame on ruling Congress party.”"Potholes are being fixed in wards represented by Congress corporators alone,” complained Prathibha Dhanraj, Dharmarayaswamy Temple ward corporator.         However, Katte Satya, former mayor and Basavanagudi corporator had a rather ironic take on the whole deadline issue. He said "The minister might have played a prank in advance for April and hence he had announced a deadline on March 31. Now, potholes still remain and we are all fooled.”