Raising a question mark on the functioning of the municipal corporation, sewerage pipelines laid at the New Railway Road nearly 13 years ago have been lying abandoned and not connected to the main pipeline causing a lot of difficulty to the residents of the area.
Establishment owners, situated along the road, rued that inundated and waterlogged roads are a routine here over the past years, but MC authorities have not done anything to solve their problem in spite of repeated requests.
After seeing no response from the Municipal Corporation, an application under the right to information act seeking information about the details of sewer lines comprising the length, the date of laying of pipelines, payment made, name of the contractor etc was filed by the residents. But, as there was no information available with the MC about the project, the authorities concerned conducted a spot inspection.
"During inspection it was, surprisingly, found that the sewerage pipeline laid near the Hari Cinema side in 1999-2000 still remains unconnected. Even shuttering of the manhole was not yet removed; earth filled to support slabs of the manhole at the time of the construction is still filled in the manhole," said Sudesh Vij, a local resident.
Last Wednesday, shopkeepers of the area, led by Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) leader and chairman of the district planning committee Gurcharan Singh Channi, met MC Commissioner Manprit Singh Chattwal and asked him to visit the spot.
The Commissioner visited the spot and formed a committee comprising Channi and four other members to check the pipelines immediately and submit a report.
On Thursday morning, when the team was inspecting the pipelines, they stopped mayor Sunil Jyoti passing from the road and took him along with them for inspection. During the process, there was exchange of heated words between BJP mayor and SAD leader over the negligence of municipal committee officials.
"We have shown the mayor, who was trying to defend the MC officials, that there were serious lapses on the part of authorities. How come that pipelines laid nearly 13 years ago still remained non-functional. Only contractors have got the benefit of the project as they left the work incomplete making the people to live in hell-like conditions. We will submit the report to the municipal commissioner to discuss the next course of action," said Channi.
Meanwhile, Chattwal admitted to the flaws in the MC functioning. "Strangely, it was noticed that there was no layout map in the office about sewerage and drinking water supply lines. The authorities had been working on the basis of crisis resolving system so far. I have directed the authorities to prepare the layout plans of the public facilities and then upload the same on the MC's website for the information of public," he said.
"To streamline the functioning, it would be assured that before making any payment to the contractor, the official concerned will certify that he updated the amendment in the plan," he added.
"Moreover, I have asked the officials to provide the file of stranded sewer lines. The action will be certainly taken against whosoever found at fault after going through the files," said Commissioner.