Panchkula in the pits: A 3 km ‘deadly’ stretch for residents to deal with | punjab$chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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Panchkula in the pits: A 3 km ‘deadly’ stretch for residents to deal with

‘Paris of Haryana’ | More than 1,000 pits, big and small on both sides dot the stretch; two youth died in June, last Friday a youngster lost balance and is in coma

punjab Updated: Sep 20, 2017 13:39 IST
Vivek Gupta
Commuters have a tough time avoiding potholes while moving towards NH-22 at Labour Chowk near Bel Colony in Panchkula on Tuesday.
Commuters have a tough time avoiding potholes while moving towards NH-22 at Labour Chowk near Bel Colony in Panchkula on Tuesday. (Sant Arora/HT)

Over 1,000 small and big potholes on just the 3 km stretch from the dividing road of Sector 12A and Industrial Area to Sector 16 Labour Chowk via Amartex light point: This is the gravity of the situation that residents here are coping with.

The irony is that municipal corporation’s office is not far away from this stretch and yet they have failed to act. There are patches in between where it gets difficult to find road as big craters have been formed. 

Kiran Nalwa (65), who lives near Sector 20, said she has asked her husband not to take her from this road as she can’t bear the constant bumps on the stretch. “It shakes my entire body and at this stage I don’t have strength to tolerate it,” she said.

And a killer stretch too

In June, two bike-borne youth died after hitting a big pothole and losing the balance near Labour Chowk. The family members had staged a protest.

Also, a youngster Pankaj Masih met with an accident on Friday with family alleging that he lost control of his bike due to a pothole on a road near Amartex light points, which has over 50 pits and that too of considerable size as checked by HT on Tuesday. 

His mother Godambari Masih told HT that family is very worried as he is in coma since incident. Sector-12 resident, Rakesh Aggarwal, said the lives could have been saved if the engineering branch had acted swiftly and were attentive towards repairing roads timely. “It’s time we the residents stage protest against all the elected people such as the mayor who have plunged the city to such disastrous depths,” he said.

President of Panchkula Industrial Welfare Association Arun Grover said the situation has reached such an alarming situation that it sends out a negative signal to the industry with regards to investing in the city. (Sant Arora/HT)

Repair work pending since two years 

A total of Rs 8 crore in the budget is already sanctioned for this road. Even tender was floated. But MC has failed to execute the work. Foremost, this lane is the first entry to the city from Zirakpur-Kalka highway and thousands of residents who live in city’s outer area in Zirakpur commute through this road. Then this stretch provides an alternate connectivity to Chandigarh via Panchkula’s Industrial Area to its southern sectors and the traffic volume is sizeable. 

Another most important reason for its wide use is its connectivity to both phases of Industrial Area that has become a hub of service industry. President of Panchkula Industrial Welfare Association Arun Grover said the situation has reached such an alarming situation that it sends out a negative signal to the industry with regards to investing in the city. Driving a Harley Davidson bike near Amartex Chowk, a man said his expensive bike had been damaged twice on Panchkula roads. “I did not expect city to have such a bad road conditions,” he said.

“The problem of bad roads in Panchkula is not new. I tried my level best to streamline the system in 2014. MC needs to be strengthened and given more resources,” Vivek Atray, former DC, Panchkula, said. Vishnu Goyal, president of Haryana Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said,”It is sad to have such roads in one of the show window district of Haryana. People should think of not paying the property tax till roads are rectified.”

“I feel embarrassed being a councillor just because the municipal corporation has been made a non-functioning body due to heavy politicisation here. This all should stop now,” Lily Bawa, councillor, said.

Rajesh Jogpal appointed MC commissioner

Rajesh Jogpal, additional deputy commissioner-cum-CEO, district rural development agency, and secretary, RTA, Panchkula, has been posted as municipal corporation commissioner with immediate effect. The post was vacant since September 13.