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Wednesday, Oct 16, 2019

No amenities: Dream of quality life comes crashing for Aerocity families

The residents blame local leaders and GMADA officials of inaction

cities Updated: Sep 20, 2019 01:24 IST
Hillary Victor
Hillary Victor
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Roads in the Aerocity housing project are riddled with large potholes.
Roads in the Aerocity housing project are riddled with large potholes. (HT PHOTO)
         

It was meant to be a modern housing project close to the glitzy and new Chandigarh International Airport in an area being developed as New Mohali. Aerocity promised a high-flying lifestyle to homeowners who were given possession of apartments in 2015 by the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA), but four years down the line the situation is going from bad to worse.

The very basic facilities are missing. “We have paid exorbitant price for the plots and were expecting to live a quality lifestyle,” rue residents.

There are around 1,000 families in the 10 blocks of Aerocity. Multinational conglomerate Larsen and Toubro (L&T) is responsible for its maintenance.

From damaged roads to lack of connectivity to missing health care services, Aerocity residents have a long list of complaints.

“The sad part is that despite holding various meetings with the local leaders concerned, ministers and even officers of GMADA since 2016 for basic amenities, no action has been taken”, says Rupinder Sing Kang, resident of F Block.

ROADS IN BAD SHAPE

When it comes to grievances, residents say they are not linked by any road to the busy Airport Road and to approach F Block, residents have to take illegal turns from the Airport roundabout, which apart from the risk of attracting heavy challans, is also an accident-prone spot.

Internal roads too are in bad shape with huge potholes in which rainwater collects, inconveniencing pedestrians. Often cars too get stuck there.

“Roads get damaged because of construction material dumped there,” said Somesh Sharma, project manager, L&T, Aerocity.

NO WALK IN THE PARK

Life is no walk in the park here - with overgrowth everywhere. Weeds, tall grass shelter reptiles and often reports have been received of sakes being spotted in houses. Internal footpaths and periphery berms are missing as are benches, canopies or swings for children. Cow and sheep herders have free run of the place.

PUBLIC HEALTH AND SANITATION

The absence of a sewage treatment plant has made things worse and the sewage lines are cleaned manually. With drains missing, water collecting by the roads or in potholes after rain too has no outlet and stagnates, giving way to water borne diseases and mosquitoes.

“Work on the sewerage treatment plant is continuing and will be completed in the next 15 days,” says Sharma.

Defogging too is not done regularly, upping dengue and malaria risks.

“GMADA promised us that it would deliver the basic infrastructure in 2014, but work on it is still continuing and we have reason to believe it will take another 10 years,” says Vinod Sharma, president, Aerocity Welfare Society

ELECTRICITY AND OTHER CIVIC REQUIREMENTS

Another grouse of the local residents is that electricity panels for power meter connections in most of the blocks are either missing, damaged or need to be replaced immediately. Streetlights too are not functioning at some spots, with poles missing too.

Power lines have been damaged at numerous spots and frequent power cuts have become the norm. What makes the situation worse is the absence of a dedicated power grid for Aerocity.

NO CHECK ON ILLEGAL ENCROACHMENTS

GMADA has completely failed to check illegal encroachments by the street vendors, that too on the main road. Vendors are using electricity panels and street poles for free advertisements and defacing homes and parks, residents allege.

NO DISPENSARIES, BUSES

Even after four years, GMADA has failed to build a bus stop for Aerocity, a dispensary, a Verka booth, a permanent police post or community centre for Aerocity.

To this, Sunil Kansal, chief engineer, GMADA, responded, “We are hopeful that work on basic infrastructure will be completed soon. Regarding the construction of dispensary, police post or community centre in the area, if we get requests from the departments concerned we will give them land.”

First Published: Sep 20, 2019 01:24 IST

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