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Fix potholes by Aug 25: BMC orders agencies

After the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation’s many claims of pothole repairs, corporators were still frowning over the state of roads.

So the BMC Standing Committee chairperson Rahul Shewale dispatched letters to various civic authorities responsible for maintaining roads in the city, asking them to be present for a joint meeting.

But the discussion ended with the different bodies passing the buck and blaming each other.

To the dismay of citizens, nothing material came of the meet, other than yet another deadline -- of August 25 -- for civic engineers to finish levelling the roads, so that upcoming festivals can be celebrated without any bumps.

The additional municipal commissioner SVR Srinivas, in charge of roads, has ordered that all the potholes be filled before August 25. Standing Committee members have demanded an action plan from the agencies detailing the method they intend to adopt to fill potholes.

In focus are pits not only on the BMC’s roads but also those under the jurisdiction of Mumbai Metropolitan Regional Development Authority (MMRDA), Maharashtra State Regional Development Corporation (MSRDC), Public Works Department (PWD), Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT) and Aarey Dairy Development.

During the discussion, the agencies tried to address the corporators’ issues, but a question that arose every once in a while was: which road belongs to whom? 

First, there was confusion about ward-level roads versus central agency’s roads. Then, there was talk of how the general public is to understand which roads are under the BMC’s jurisdiction.

The corporators demanded that either the corporation take responsibility of all roads and flyovers or it put up boards declaring the agency accountable for the maintenance of the particular road. “We called a joint meeting with members from all the road authorities. We have asked them to submit an action plan on how they plan to fill the potholes before August 25, so that the festivals are celebrated without any problems,” Shewale said.

Srinivas said, “The potholes are being filled all around the city and we have set a deadline of August 25 for everyone. If the potholes are not filled by then, we will take serious action against them.” 

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