Despite several complaints, Andheri Link Road continues to be in terrible shape
Despite various citizens reaching out to the authorities asking them to fix these bad patches, the road has continued to remain in bad shape. There has also been confusion amongst the citizens on who is responsible for maintaining this road
Mumbai: The residents of Andheri West and commuters using Link Road would have experienced the bad condition of the road located between Infinity Mall junction and DN Nagar Metro station at least once in the past year.
Despite various citizens reaching out to the authorities asking them to fix these bad patches, the road has continued to remain in bad shape. There has also been confusion amongst the citizens on who is responsible for maintaining this road.
The patch of Link road, which was with Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s (BMC) road departments, was handed over to the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) during the ongoing construction of the Metro Line 2A and then part of this was handed back to BMC for further maintenance.
Members of a citizen welfare forum called Mumbai North Central District Forum (MNCDF) have been tweeting out to BMC and MMRDA since the last monsoon season, asking them to fix various bad patches on this road for more than a year. The two most important patches, Infinity Mall junction and RTO junction on Link Road are the worst affected patches. The area, which has malls and important corporations from the film and television industry, has seen some of the poorest road conditions in the area. The signal near the Laxmi Industrial estate has also been in bad shape.
Bhavesh Chheda, a member of MNCDF said, “Since last monsoon, I have been tweeting to BMC and MMRDA, asking them to repair, but nothing has happened. BMC keeps responding that they will repair this patch but not even once this has been repaired.”
When contacted, MMRDA commissioner SVR Srinivas said, “This road has been given back to BMC by MMRDA more than a year ago. There have been several rounds of meetings with BMC and a joint visit was also conducted with BMC 4-5 months ago. As per the latest status, BMC has agreed to maintain the link road under the viaduct (metro line) excluding the station area and 25 metres on either side of it. Both the mentioned junction locations (Infinity mall and RTO junctions) are under the viaduct where as per the Minutes of the Meeting, maintenance of the road is the responsibility of BMC. At the Link Road RTO Junction, the road is in bad shape because of ongoing sewer line micro tunnelling work by BMC. The road below the station was repaired by MMRDA contractors.”
Freya Mistry, another member of MNCDF said, “When BMC did not do anything after Twitter complaints, we raised the issue through the state government’s Aaple Sarkar portal, where BMC is bound to respond in a time-bound manner, the BMC closed the complaint there as well saying it has been sent to the roads department. But the road continues to remain in the same condition.”
The RTO junction at Link Road, which connects to Veera Desai Road and the RTO junction is also an important road which sees a lot of vehicular movement. The barricading at the junction due to the ongoing sewer works has further added to the jams.
Dr Priya Sataye, a resident from Andheri said, “Sometimes, I have to go to Lokhandwala to see patients, the route for me via the RTO signal is an ideal and shorter route but that road is a back-breaking road. Now, I travel all the way from Achutrao Patwardhan Marg, so that I do not have to travel through such a bad road.”
When HT contacted the executive engineer of the roads department, responsible for this patch of the road, he refused to comment after hearing the whole issue. The engineer did not have an idea and said he will have to check whether the maintenance of this road is with BMC or MMRDA.
HT explained the whole issue to the Additional Commissioner for Projects, BMC, P Velrasu who said that the BMC will look into the issue and do the needful.
Citizens have reported that one of the alternate routes to this patch is the Achutrao Patwardhan Marg, which citizens can use from Shree Swami Samarth Circle to Kokilaben Hospital has also been in bad shape, besides the bad road, the ongoing sewer project by BMC for almost 2 years now have irked the citizens who have alleged that travelling for nearly a kilometre of patch on this road sometimes take 45 minutes, which should ideally take 10 minutes.
Sunil Mohan, a resident from the area, has tweeted time and again on this issue to BMC but there has been no response. “Besides bad roads, it now feels like the sewer project work near the MHADA junction on this road has been going on for an eternity. There are so many residents who have reached out to BMC but there seems to be no end to our problems. I hope BMC takes this up seriously and ends our traffic jam problems.”