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HindustanTimes Sat,30 Aug 2014

Soon Mumbai may get a new way to report potholes

Poorvi Kulkarni, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, July 26, 2013
First Published: 08:23 IST(26/7/2013) | Last Updated: 08:56 IST(26/7/2013)

Citizens could soon get another avenue to lodge complaints about potholes developed on city’s roads.

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The BMC is considering an alternative to its current pothole tracking software, to further involve citizens in the process of reporting potholes.

This system will include a telephone helpline, which citizens can call on to report a pothole, by giving details of its location.

This could either be an exclusive helpline for potholes, or the existing number could be used extended for pothole complaints.

“The official handling the helpline will take down the details and pass it on to the engineer. The purpose of introducing this system is to make the process of complaining about potholes easier for citizens,” said SVR Srinivas, additional municipal commissioner, in charge of roads.

The current pothole tracking system has been criticised for being complex and prone to glitches.

Also, it can only be availed of by smart-phone users.

“The number of potholes reported on the pothole tracking website is a fraction of those on roads. Many people don’t use the software because of the cumbersome procedure it requires. It will be very convenient if complaints could be made through an SMS or a phone call,” said Nikhil Desai, a Matunga-based civic activist.

The drawback of the proposed system, however, is that unlike the pothole tracker, it will no provision for citizens to track the repair of potholes reported.

“The tracking software ensures time-bound repair Engineers can be held accountable for delays in undertaking work,” said a senior civic official

Corporators said a parallel system to complement this software was needed.

“The primary concern of citizens is that potholes get repaired, not the method that is adopted for it,” said Rais Shaikh SP group leader.


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