Mumbai: Contractors who fail to maintain skywalks will face strict action

After a metal panel from Bandra skywalk fell on a senior citizen’s car, BMC and MMRDA have decided to crack down on contractors

Following mid-day’s front-page report on how a metal panel came loose from the Bandra West skywalk and crashed onto the car of a senior citizen, officials from the BMC had decided to take to task the contractors who do not maintain skywalks properly.

Both the civic body and the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) will write to contractors to ask that they carry out regular maintenance to skywalks under their management to prevent a repeat of the incident.

In yesterday’s report (‘Skyfall!’), this paper had highlighted how Dr Ravindra Diddee was struggling to find answers from the authorities after the tin panel — measuring 8X3 ft — fell on his SUV and caused damages amounting to R1 lakh on October 1.

The skywalk is one of the 36 that were built by the MMRDA and then handed over to the BMC for maintenance. However, when mid-day had reached out to the BMC, it had claimed ignorance of the incident and said the skywalk was being managed by a contractor, as it was still in the defect liability period (DLP).

The same point was reiterated by MMRDA joint project director Dilip Kawatkar, who said, “We have already handed over the skywalks to BMC and now it’s their duty to maintain the same. But if the skywalks are in the DLP then it’s the job of the contractor.”

However, an MMRDA
official, on condition of anonymity, said, “We will write to the contractors who are in charge of skywalks still in DLP, asking that they maintain the skywalks properly. In order to prevent any further incidents, frequent inspections must be conducted as well.”

A BMC official also told mid-day that the civic body would also write to contractors over the issue. “Those contractors who are not doing their duty of maintaining the skywalks will have to face action because public safety cannot be ignored at any cost,” added the official.

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