PMC allocates ₹40 lakhs for daily maintenance of Satara Road BRTS
The decision has raised eyebrows as the PMC continues to spend disproportionate amounts of money in the name of BRTS improvement even as the very existence of BRTS in the city is in trouble
On the one hand, the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) has removed the Ahmednagar Road Bus Rapid Transit System (BRTS) to curb traffic issues whereas on the other, it has allocated Rs40 lakhs for daily maintenance of the Swargate-Katraj (Satara Road) BRTS. The decision has raised eyebrows as the PMC continues to spend disproportionate amounts of money in the name of BRTS improvement even as the very existence of BRTS in the city is in trouble.
Currently, Swargate-Katraj is the only operational BRTS route in the city, and one where accidents also take place frequently. Two years ago, the Satara Road BRTS was revamped at a cost of nearly one crore rupees. The BRTS route faced delays due to the revamp and the PMC administration even appointed a consultant, incurring additional expenses. Despite the annual allocation of funds for the maintenance of this BRTS, an additional Rs40 lakhs has now been allocated for the day-to-day maintenance of the BRTS in the current financial year.
The maintenance activities include work on service roads, widening road crossings for pedestrians, and repairing iron nets among others. But the municipal administration has come under fire for extravagant spending in the name of BRTS route enhancement as the improvement in the BRTS route is disproportionate to the amounts of money spent on it.
Amar Shinde, executive engineer of the PMC road department, said, “We carry out maintenance work of BRTS routes that are operational. Swargate-Katraj (Satara Road) BRTS is operational and we have floated a tender of Rs40 lakhs for maintenance.”
“Earlier, we had spent money on the Satara Road but it wasn’t on maintenance of the BRTS route. We will now carry out work dedicated to the BRTS route,” Shinde said.
Naren Kondra, a resident of Katraj, said, “It is a waste of money on the maintenance of BRTS routes. It is a white elephant. The system is outdated in the current scenario of the city. The number of vehicles is increasing and they need more space to accommodate it.”