In a meeting held on Monday, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit instructed senior officials to ensure that all roads are repaired by September 2008 so that the city's roads are free of potholes before Diwali.
Not to be outdone, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) announced that it would finish the repairs within 10 days.
It seems, the Delhi government and the MCD are competing to appear more efficient than the other.
Hindustan Times has been consistently reporting about the appalling state of Delhi’s roads that, coupled with rain, brought the city to its knees. It highlighted for the first time cases of deaths and injuries caused by potholed roads.
Dikshit has asked the Public Works Department to come up with a workable strategy to improve the city’s roads. She deputed Delhi chief secretary Rakesh Mehta to implement the decision through the MCD.
MCD standing committee chairman Vijender Gupta said they were going to work on a war footing to repair roads.
“The road repair work will cost us Rs 200 crore,” said Gupta, listing the measures for tackling the situation in the short-term.
He said the MCD would constitute 37 mobile emergency units equipped with cold emulsion, cement bags and bitumen and a digital camera to take pictures of the potholes, before and after repair. Residents can file their complaints by dialling 1266.
Gupta, however, said the problem would be solved only once the drainage system in the city is improved. While the MCD’s strategy seems perfect, it is worth asking why it waited so long to act.
“The rain in the city has been unprecedented this time. The DMRC is carrying out massive construction work at 10 different points. The MCD cannot be blamed for this,” said Subhash Arya, leader of the house in MCD.