Dug-up sidewalks a safety hazard in Chandigarh’s Sector 8
The residents of Sector 8 are fumed over the UT electricity department leaving the roadsides dug up. They allege that the department failed to level and repair such patches after laying underground wires in the area.
With monsoon already unfurling in the city, their fears have only compounded. They say that accumulation of water in the pits due to rainfall poses huge safety risk.
Sector 8 was chosen for a pilot project in which underground power lines were to be laid by the department. While the project was sanctioned in 2017, works were taken up only at the beginning of this year, giving rise to numerous trenches over the past few months.
President of the sector’s resident welfare body, RS Gill said, “Since November last year, sidewalks have been dug up thrice, giving much trouble to the residents. After two telecom companies laid underground wires here, the electricity department dug up the roadsides again for a project.”
Gill complained that the earthworks were taken up indiscriminately before people’s houses. “At some places, the road has caved in, inviting mishaps. These pits are also dangerous for pedestrians, especially during rain when they won’t be visible. The sand taken out after digging these holes has been washed away by the recent spells of rain, clogging the water gullies. Now more waterlogging awaits us,” he rued.
Captain (retd) GS Ghuman, who lives opposite to the Sector 8 market, contended, “It has been many months now and it seems that the work has been abandoned by the officials, leaving the ruts behind. The dug-up sidewalks pose risk for senior citizens, many of whom tend to use them frequently.”
Local area councillor and senior deputy mayor Maheshinder Singh Sidhu said, “The timing of the three projects has been such that the trenches have stayed there for the past few months. However, we have followed it up with the UT administration. Once the underground wiring work of Sector 8-C is completed, the MC will start restoration work of all spots that were dug up. If any resident is facing problems due to this, they may approach me, and I shall resolve the issue.”