Ensure repaired city roads remain free of potholes for 5 yrs: HC to BMC
The bench said the only two ways to make more lasting repairs and to rein in the perpetual problem of potholes on the city’s roads each year was to rope in “honest and hardworking contractors,” and “use quality repair material.”mumbai Updated: Feb 28, 2017 00:36 IST
The Bombay high court on Monday said the BMC must give residents of the city a “guarantee” that the roads repair work that it carries out before of this year’s monsoon season will last for, or not wear off for, “at least the next five years”.
The court has also called for a joint meeting of the BMC, PWD, MSRTC, the Bombay Port Trust, the joint commissioner traffic, a senior officer from the city police, and all other stakeholders.
The meeting will be held on March 10 at the high court conference room and a bench of justice VM Kanade and justice PR Bora asked all participants to “come prepared” with a plan to rid all arterial roads in Mumbai of potholes.
The bench said the only two ways to make more lasting repairs and to rein in the perpetual problem of potholes on the city’s roads each year was to rope in “honest and hardworking contractors,” and “use quality repair material.”
“Whether you concretise roads or employ another repair method, ensure that the quality is such that you can guarantee that it will last for the next five to six years,” the bench said. “Why is it that only Mumbai faces this problem of potholes every monsoon? Look at some other states in our country, all roads in Karnataka are very good. In Mumbai, even the Marine Drive stretch is bumpy,” the bench said.
The bench was hearing a suo moto PIL on the poor condition of roads in Mumbai and the BMC’s failure to prevent and repair potholes every monsoon.
Earlier during the day’s hearing, BMC counsel advocate Anil Sakhre had told the court that the corporation had already begun the road repair work, but it was facing some problems coordinating with the traffic and the city police departments.
Sakhre said as per the first phase of the BMC’s plan, work on 94 “critical” roads and traffic junctions had begun. He said the corporation had identified 938 stretches that required repairs and the tender for such work would be issued next month. Sakhre said in the meanwhile, the court must direct the police to allow the BMC to cordon off such roads for repair work.
“We have just about four months to carry out such work and we can’t lose time in fighting with the police. They prevent us from working at night citing noise pollution norms. While during the day, they neither allow our utility vehicles within city limits, nor do they allow us to restrict traffic.”
“Concretisation needs about six weeks to dry up and settle. Say we finish repairing a stretch by 3.30pm, 4 pm, the police allows heavy traffic on that stretch by 8pm of the same evening,” Sakhre said.
The BMC has claimed it will complete all repair work by May 2017.