Dadarao Billhore, 46, a vegetable vendor from Andheri, has been filling up potholes with his bare hands for the past two months.
In July 2015, Billhore’s son Prakash, 16, died when the bike he was riding hit an 18-feet wide water-filled pothole on the Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road. Prakash was driving back home from college with his cousin.
“The trench was made to repair burnt cable wires underground but was not covered after they were repaired. I lost my son due to negligence of civic authorities,” said Billhore.
Now, Billhore, 46, has made it his mission to highlight the callous way in which the municipal corporation maintains the city’s roads.
“Filling up potholes is a tribute to my son who was a bright student and was the hope for a better future of our family,” Billhore said.
Every Sunday, he and his two friends scout around Andheri looking for potholes and filling them up with sand or pebbles.
“The solution, however, is temporary. We have approached authorities to look into the issue. But, as we have not got any response from them, we fill up potholes to make streets safer for bikers and pedestrians,” he said.
After the accident, the Aarey police station registered criminal cases against a municipal officer and an engineer from a private power company. The two were held guilty under section 304A (causing death due to negligence) and section 338 (act endangering life and causing grievous hurt). They have got anticipatory bail.
“The charge sheet will be filed this week and we expect court proceedings to begin soon,” said Vilas Chavan, senior inspector from Aarey police station.