Bengaluru’s BBMP said no potholes on 74 roads. Court ordered survey finds 437
- The report said of the 5,435 responses from citizens and survey, 437 cases were related to potholes and bad roads. The rest 4,998 cases were related to footpaths
A crackdown by the Karnataka high court following the death of a 19-year-old medical student, and hearings of Public Interest Litigations (PILs) have revealed that there are at least 5,435 potholes, bad roads or bad footpaths in Bengaluru.
The data was revealed in a report submitted by the Karnataka State Legal Services Authority (KSLSA) to the Karnataka high court. However, these 5,435 may well be a sampling. KSLSA arrived at these numbers by conducting a surprise inspection of 25 roads in the city on the basis of information collected from volunteers.
A city-wide survey is expected to show more bad roads and footpaths, and potholes.
The report came after the Karnataka high court, in February 2020, directed KSLSA to conduct a survey using volunteers, while hearing a petition filed by Vijayan Menon and others, seeking the court’s intervention to improve the condition of the roads in the city.
KSLSA then requested citizens to send photos and videos of the potholes and broken footpaths in their localities.
The results contradicted Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike’s (BBMP) claim, in February, that there were no potholes on 74 roads in the city.
KSLSA volunteers chose 25 of these 74 roads for their inspection. The report pointed out that of the 5,435 responses from citizens and the survey, 437 cases were related to potholes and bad roads. The remaining 4,998 cases were related to footpaths. Of the 4,998 footpath-related inputs, 3,531 were about blocked footpaths, 1,443 were about damaged footpaths, and the remaining 24 were about the very absence of a footpath
H Shashidhara Shetty, member secretary at KSLSA said during the inspection the committee found at least four roads in Bommanahalli that were not motorable.
The HC had come down heavily on BBMP’s inaction following the death of a 19-year-old medical student while trying to avoid a pothole. Tasdeeq Bushra died after her scooter was hit by the truck belonging to BBMP while she was trying to avoid craters on Lingarajapuram-Hennur main road. She died on the spot.
On February 8, the Karnataka high court bench pulled up the BBMP regarding Bushra’s death. “Imagine people dying because of potholes on roads. Imagine the plight of the family,” a division bench of Justice BV Nagarathna and Justice MG Uma said during the hearing of a public interest litigation.
“Although several orders have been made in this writ petition, the fact remains that potholes are still festering on streets of Bengaluru not only on major arterial roads but even in other smaller roads. It is public knowledge that riders of two-wheelers, as well as four-wheelers, have died during the course of avoidance of potholes while proceeding on roads,” the bench observed.