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Cave-in chaos continues

On Sunday two roads in South and North Delhi, leaving leaving five to 10 feet-deep craters and throwing traffic out of gear. See graphics

delhi Updated: Aug 02, 2010 00:20 IST
Neelam Pandey
Neelam Pandey
Hindustan Times

On Sunday two roads in South and North Delhi, leaving leaving five to 10 feet-deep craters and throwing traffic out of gear.

Roads in Devli and Shakti Nagar caved in, taking total number of such incidents in last 48 hours to seven. On Saturday, five roads in the city caved in during the rainfall.

The road in Devli was constructed barely one month ago by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) over a pipeline.

“The damage at Shakti Nagar was minor. Our staff has cordoned off the area and is carrying out the repair work. In the case of Devli, the Delhi Jal Board (DJB) had laid sewerage pipeline one month ago after which we had constructed the road. It seems that the pipeline was not laid properly and due to leakages, the road caved in,” said a senior MCD official.

The civic agency said it was impossible to tell which road would cave in when because most of Delhi roads have been constructed over water and sewerage pipelines.

With constant leakages, these pipes get corroded and damage the cement cases of the pipes. The water that seeps through dissolves or washes away the soil and cement filling between the road and the pipe, leaving seven to 10-feet-wide gaps between them.

“At least 90 per cent of roads in residential colonies have been constructed over either water or a sewerage pipeline. That is why you have so many cases of roads caving in,” said Deep Mathur, director, press and information, MCD.

Such frequent cave-ins have been burning a hole in civic agency’s pocket. “Whenever a road caves in, apart from the trouble that commuters face, we also have to shell out a lot of money in reconstructing those stretches. On an average, we spend R 5-20 lakh on carrying out the repairing a single road,” said a senior MCD official.

“The drainage system in most areas was laid at least 30 years ago and has become faulty. In many cases this also contributes to soil became loose and giving way,” added Mathur.

According to the civic agency, the technology for checking such leakages is the responsibility of the DJB.

The carriageway of the Aurbindo Marg which had been shut down following the cave-in was reopened on Sunday.

Another cave-in was reported from a road near Raj Ghat. But the PWD claimed that it was dug up by the DJB which is carrying out some work there.

See graphics

First Published: Aug 01, 2010 23:02 IST