Even as citizens grapple with potholes, there is going to be some more digging on the city roads, albeit for security reasons.
Acting on the state government’s directions related to the Rs 949-crore CCTV surveillance project, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has directed its ward officers in central Mumbai and western suburbs to allow digging of roads, even during the monsoon, for laying wires and installation of poles. Usually, digging for utilities during the rainy season is not allowed.
The CCTV project, recommended by a committee in the wake of the 26/11 attacks, is taken up on urgent basis to build a network of cameras across the city for citizens’ safety.
The BMC has recorded 2,657 potholes in the city. Now, the civic body’s order for laying CCTV wires will make roads bumpier.
Civic chief Ajoy Mehta said, “I have instructed ward officials to coordinate and cooperate with the agency carrying out this work, as it is a vital security project for citizens. I have also asked my officials to make sure a temporary tent is created to protect any kind of water entering the road while trenching work is on. The reinstatement of the road should be done immediately after the trenching work is completed .”
One of the civic officials, said, “If the reinstatement of the roads is done properly then there is less fear of potholes. But during the monsoon, the dry spell is not available that is why the road reinstatement work is hampered and is not up to the mark.”
The CCTV installation project has been running behind its schedule due to delays in getting trenching permissions from various ward offices, for which the BMC was slammed by the state, government civic sources said. In a special order in June, the state government asked the civic body to allow digging roads within seven days of application, which can continue throughout the week. The circular also stated that the permissions will be valid for 72 hours.