PRIORITIES of the authorities here seem to have a clear direction – the VIP destinations. While several major roads that bear the brunt of heavy traffic have become drivers’ nightmare following the rains that have created huge potholes, the authorities are busy laying fresh roads in VIP areas that hardly need even a retouch.
During the past one month, even rains could not stop the Capital Project Administration (CPA) from completing construction of a square, widening of roads and constructing a retaining wall to pave a new way to Char Imali – a destination that houses several VIPs including the Chief Secretary, ministers and several IAS officers.
On the other hand, the recent heavy rains have worsened the condition of already-pitiable busy roads. The potholes on most of main busy roads are veritable trap-holes and sure prescription for serious accidents. This has also slowed down the average speed of the traffic.
The poor quality of construction could be gauged from the fact that in almost all major roads, the top layer of asphalt has come off and the rough road metal of different sizes has been exposed, causing hardships to the drivers. Some of these roads were constructed only six months back. For example, some huge potholes have appeared on Link Road Number-1, a road widened and constructed only six months back. The condition of Link Road Number 2 and 3 is similar.
Still, the condition of these roads is better in comparison to busier roads like Hamidia Road, Royal Market road, Kamla Park road, Bus Stand- Chhola road, Bhopal Talkies-Karond road, Mata Mandir-New Market road, Chetak Bridge road, Chetak Bridge-Rachna Nagar road, Raisen road, Chuna Bhatti road, Hoshangabad road, Nehru Nagar road, Subhash Nagar road and Berasia road etc.
Besides, numerous streets and by-lanes of the City are in a bad shape. Most of these streets are considered high-intensity traffic roads.
It is estimated that about 1500 passenger car units passes during peak hours from some of these roads. PWD Bhopal region chief engineer V K Amar, however, said that the potholes of the roads have been patched up. He did not comment on inquiry into the bad condition of the newly constructed roads. When asked about the total damage of PWD properties during the recent rains in Bhopal, Amar said that he would have to look into the estimates. PWD has the responsibility to maintain most of the main roads.
On the other hand, CPA Superintending Engineer Jawahar Singh said that potholes have been filled up. The construction or patching up of roads can begin only after opening of asphalt plants. He said that most of the CPA-owned roads are in a good condition adding that anyway the CPA has not many roads in the City to maintain.
BMC Commissioner Manish Singh said that the PWD and CPA have the responsibility of most of the main roads. The BMC has the responsibility of colony roads. The repairing of such roads is a regular affair in the BMC.