The agencies responsible for filling all potholes on the city's roads were given yet another deadline on Tuesday. Island city district guardian minister Jayant Patil instructed the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Develop-ment Authority (MMRDA), the public works department and the Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) to repair all roads by August 24.
“The potholes are to be filled by August 24 and I will go on an inspection tour of the island city on that day with all officers concerned,” said Patil after a meeting with the officials.
This is the second such deadline given to the agencies. On August 5, suburban guardian minister Arif Naseem Khan had given the authorities a 48-hour deadline to fill 6,000 potholes. The BMC had asked for five additional days to complete the work, but complaints are still pouring in.
Since July 20, HT has been publishing reports on the pathetic state of Mumbai’s roads and the need for better construction and maintenance of roads.
On Tuesday, Jayant Patil said it was high time the roads were repaired as several Ganpati mandals had started taking idols to their respective pandals. “The number of processions will increase. I have received complains from the mandals that roads are still in bad shape. The mandal officials will also accompany me on August 24,” he said.
Asked about the earlier deadline and unfinished work, Patil said Khan’s ultimatum was to get repairs done quickly. “But I think it would be reasonable to expect the agencies to complete the task before Ganeshotsav,” he added. The minister also refused to buy the argument (made by officials) that the monsoon damages roads and hampers repairs. “Cities in other countries, too, receive heavy rainfall but they still manage to build good roads and maintain them. We have everything on paper, but then it doesn’t apply when we construct our roads,” he said.