Road cave-in reports on record high in city | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Road cave-in reports on record high in city

Old roads, new roads, it appears that all roads in the Capital are on the verge of collapse. Even the ones that have been laid ahead of the Commonwealth Games have begun giving trouble: Several roads near the Games venues have already started showing rot, raising serious questions about the quality of work being carried out. HT reports. Costly carelessness

delhi Updated: Aug 23, 2010 01:58 IST
HT Correspondents

Old roads, new roads, it appears that all roads in the Capital are on the verge of collapse. Even the ones that have been laid ahead of the Commonwealth Games have begun giving trouble: Several roads near the Games venues have already started showing rot, raising serious questions about the quality of work being carried out.

Ringing the alarm bell, the Delhi Traffic Police have said this is the first time that so many cases of cave-in have been reported. On Saturday, south Delhi's Siri Fort Road, which is bang opposite one of the main venues for badminton and squash caved in throwing traffic out of gear.

The Public Works Department (PWD) constructed the road barely two months ago. Defending the quality, PWD blamed seepages and trench-less work being carried out by service providers for the cave-ins. In addition to this, a road outside Gate No.1 of Yamuna Sports Complex, which is also one of the Games venues, caved in on Saturday.

Rakesh Mishra, PWD engineer-in-chief, blamed constant leakages in the pipe near Kamla Nehru College. He said the soil inside had become soft and due to traffic's pressure caved in. "We will be restoring the stretch now," Mishra said.

He said the trench-less technology used to put down utilities services including communication lines and electricity cables the roads are becoming hollow from inside. "The road cave-in that happened near the Yamuna Sports Complex was also a result of the digging work being carried out by the power company," he said.

This year over 20 roads have caved in so far in just two months: This includes roads under the jurisdiction both the New Delhi Municipal Council and Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD).

Last year, only 12 major road cave-ins were reported from the city. With Games round the corner, the civic agencies are busy laying new roads but it appears all this is being done in a hurry.

After Sunday’s rains, even roads in the VIP areas such as Shahjahan Road, the roundabout of Tughlaq Road, Bhairon Road and Mathura road have potholes. "The number of cases of cave-ins have increased manifold this year compared to last year. We had sent a list of roads that usually crumble even after a brief spell of rain to the agencies for carrying out repair work. But even we were caught unaware by some of the roads that caved in, as a few of them are brand new — such as Siri Fort Road and many have no history of caving in — such as the Ashoka Road and Rajesh Pilot Marg," said Ajay Chadha, special CP (traffic). "With the city receiving excessive rainfall this year the situation is all the more worse."

Trench-less technology is again being blamed for this. "For laying electricity cables and communication lines digging up the entire stretch is no longer required. Over a period of time water starts seeping and the soil becomes soil and gives way when it rains heavily," said P K Sarkar, head of transport planning, School of Planning and Architecture.