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Mumbai: MNS gives BMC 48 hours to fix potholes, or else...

Party has threatened to beat up contractors if the civic body fails to meet the deadline; the party claimed to record a total of 1,600 potholes in the city — nearly four times the figure being quoted by the BMC

MumbaiAfter a band baaja protest yesterday, the MNS has given the BMC 48 hours to fill all potholes or face its wrath. The party has threatened to beat up contractors if the civic body fails to meet the deadline.

Yesterday, MNS workers took to the streets with dhol-tashe to protest the official apathy towards the pothole problem. They drummed up support for their cause in areas like Mulund, Dadar, Kandivli and Borivli. “We met the ward officials in all those areas and demanded that potholes be repaired immediately, otherwise we will beat up contractors. They have given us an assurance that the potholes will be filled within 48 hours. If they don’t, we will do an ‘MNS style’ protest,” said the party’s group leader in the BMC, Sandip Deshpande.

MNS drums up support for its crusade against potholes with a band baaja protest yesterday
MNS drums up support for its crusade against potholes with a band baaja protest yesterday

They even took pictures of potholes across several wards. While the BMC claims that the number of potholes on the road so far are 482, the MNS claims the real number is nearly four times higher. Corporators and their supporters led the procession with placards reading ‘Mumbai pothole festival.’ They slammed the Sena-BJP combine for the mess.

“Most of the potholes that they were concerned about have already been addressed. If any are remaining, we will fill them immediately. Our officials are working round the clock,” said Sahebrao Gaikwad, assistant municipal commissioner, R-South ward (Kandivli).

mid-day has reported how almost every part of the city suffers from this problem, be it posh south Mumbai or the surburbs. Corporators across party lines cornered the municipal commissioner over the issue on Thursday. The MNS has been more aggressive, with its threat to kidnap the Dadar ward officer if potholes were not repaired quickly.

Protest turns violent

During the protest yesterday, a labourer carrying out road repairs was assaulted by party workers. MNS group leader Sandip Deshpande said, “When my colleagues had gone to Kandivli to click pictures of the potholes, they saw a labourer doing repairs there. They asked him why the pothole had resurfaced even though it had been filled just a day ago, and slapped him a few times.”

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