KDMC promises lab-tested roads

Dakshban Vishnoi had sought details of the laying of a particular road in Kalyan, which he felt was a shoddy job

Not all roads are paved with good intentions. Social worker Dakshban Vishnoi was certain of this after observing a particular one near Khadakpada in Kalyan (West). When all his efforts to procure details from Kalyan-Dombivli Municipal Corporation (KDMC) of the work done on the stretch were frustrated, Vishnoi decided to sit on a 12-day hunger strike outside the civic agency's office. Finally, KDMC has agreed to collect samples of four roads in the area, which will be tested at two laboratories.

Going all the way: Dakshban Vishnoi on a 12-day hunger strike outside
the KDMC office. FILE PIC

Suspecting the standard process of laying a road in three layers had not been employed, four months ago Vishnoi had sought information on the work under the Right to Information (RTI) Act. But KDMC did not entertain his query. Later he demanded details for all roads in the city. This time too the authorities failed him.

Life in the fast lane
A fed-up Vishnoi then gave a written notice (copy available with MiD DAY) of his intention to proceed on a hunger strike no less than three times to KDMC, but the authorities remained deaf to his demands. On January 5, Vishnoi went on a fast outside the KDMC gate.

MiD DAY had also reported (Bottles hurled at crusader on hunger strike) how four unidentified bikers attacked Vishnoi and the policeman provided for his security with soda bottles in the wee hours on January 13, outside the KDMC office.

On January 16, officials from KDMC gave a written assurance (MiD DAY has a copy of the same) to Vishnoi that they will form a nine-member committee who will collect samples of four roads among 40 in the city. The samples will be sent to two laboratories (private and government). If any of the contractors are found guilty, they will be punished.

"I called off the hunger strike after KDMC assured me that they will investigate the matter," said Vishnoi.
Vishnoi, who runs an online marketing business, is a resident of Valdhuni in Kalyan (East). Four months ago he saw a school kid fall from an auto and get injured near Sandeep Hotel, Khadakpada in Kalyan (West). The auto driver lost control due to potholes on the road. This spurred on the social worker to dig deeper into the problem.

MiD DAY report on January 14

And the award goes to...
Kalyan-Dombivli Municipal Corporation last year received the Nagar Ratna award in a grand ceremony held at YB Chavan hall in Mumbai. The chief guest was President Pratibha Patil. In all 12 municipal corporations out of the total 63 in the country covered under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) were felicitated in different categories. KDMC was rewarded for improvement of roads and streets in the twin cities.

The other side
"Vishnoi called off his strike after KDMC assured of proper investigation. The special committee of nine members will take samples of four roads and these will be sent to laboratories. After getting the reports we will decide on the future course of action," said Pratap Thakur, public relations officer, KDMC.

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