An upset Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation commissioner has decided to scrap the project to survey minor nullahs and roadside drains in Mumbai. Reason: Ajoy Mehta is upset with the shoddy nullah desilting work done by contractors allegedly in connivance with civic officials.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) was to appoint consultants, which was going to cost Rs 13 crore, to survey minor nullahs and roadside drains in the city. The survey was expected to be completed in two years with the use of advanced technology. But with no consultants, it will be up to the civic ward officials to survey the nullahs.
Mehta, said, “The project to appoint consultants has been shelved and the powers have been delegated to ward officials to survey the minor nullahs and roadside drains.”
A civic official, requesting anonymity, said, “The civic chief wanted the ward officials to carry out the survey rather than spend Rs 13 crore on consultants.”
Last year, the civic body had proposed a detailed survey of minor nullahs and roadside drains to get their accurate location. This was rejected by the civic standing committee earlier this year because of the high cost of the project.
It was revised with added work and software development and also included a proposal to appoint new consultants worth Rs 13 crore. The revised proposal was to be tabled before the standing committee, but the project has been shelved before that.
The project would have surveyed 200 minor nullahs spanning 420km as well as 2,000km of roadside drains.
It would have helped BMC to respond promptly to flooding in certain areas of Mumbai. The drains and nullahs were to be mapped using the Geographic Information System (GIS), which would have been uploaded on software accessible to civic officials on a real-time basis.
Every year, the BMC undertakes pre-monsoon nullah cleaning work worth Rs 90-100 crore, to avoid flooding.
However, after the June 19 deluge that took place this year, Mehta had ordered a probe in the pre-monsoon desilting work carried out by BMC’s storm water drain department.