After Chief Minister Prthiviraj Chavan pulled up the civic body for the sorry state of Mumbai’s roads, on Sunday, seven zonal deputy municipal commissioners (DMC) inspected roads in their jurisdiction. The officials discovered that apart from the shabby work done by the road contractors, utility agencies too had contributed to making the roads a mess.
Later in the day, this reporter visited some of the spots the DMCs examined.
One of the biggest reasons for bad roads is the shoddy road repairs done by contractors of utility agencies after they dug up stretches for work.
“Contractors who carried out work on these roads will be penalised Rs one lakh for shoddy reinstatement,” said a senior Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) official.
These contractors will be sent show-cause notices.
“We have to submit the status report to the municipal commissioner by Monday evening. Contractors who don’t fill potholes by then will invite action,” said a DMC, requesting anonymity.
For instance, the roads near Shiv Sena Bhavan, Shivaji Park and Mahim Causeway were dug up for changing water lines, and the contractor appointed by the BMC’s hydraulic department has not reinstated the roads.
The contractor who has filled potholes near Haji Ali junction will be fined as repairs have got washed away and potholes have reappeared.
Last year, more than 430 km of roads were dug up repeatedly by utility agencies.
Other agencies such as the public work department (PWD) and the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) said they have completed 80% of repair. The PWD, which looks after the two highways and the Sion-Panvel highway, said it has filled 90% to 95% of the potholes with emulsion, a temporary filling. “We will start work with hot-mix, which stays on roads longer,” said RK Jawanjal, executive engineer, PWD.
“We have two roads for maintenance. The Andheri-Ghatkopar Link Road is concretised. Its paver blocks were dislocated and that we have replaced. On RC Marg, there were potholes at two or three spots and we are filling that. Within four days, work will be over,” Dilip Kawathakar, public relations officer, MMRDA.
Inputs from Prajakta Chavan