mid day editorial: Paver blocks must be permanently banned
A report in mid-day yesterday spoke about an entire stretch of road being repaired by paver blocks. Shockingly, the civic body has called it a 'temporary measure'
It does seem as if the word 'banned' has various connotations depending on authority and circumstance. Going by the various reports in newspapers these days, at least the BMC does not seem to understand the magnitude of the word. A report in mid-day yesterday spoke about an entire stretch of road being repaired by paver blocks. Shockingly, the civic body has called it a 'temporary measure'.
Since when have 'banned' items been allowed to be used temporarily? These blocks were specifically banned by the civic body for repair work as they were found to be ineffective in correcting the situation. It was because of the resulting unevenness of the road due to these blocks, causing several fatal accidents, that the civic body was forced to ban the tiles. Also, the standard technical advisory committee (STAC) has, for years, been slamming the use of paver blocks. It had become impossible to ensure smooth roads with their use. And, even one block coming undone meant the entire stretch would become a mess within days, necessitating road repair work too many times a year.
Ensuring smooth roads for the city seems to be rocket science for the civic body. There is probably not a single road, barring one around the chief minister's residence, which is pothole-free. Yes, potholes are a universal problem, but for the financial capital of the country, the density of potholes per 100 metres is staggering and unacceptable.
The civic body has been taken to court over this through a public interest litigation, but citizens need to keep up the pressure. The high court has left it to the state government on banning the blocks altogether and that decision is awaited. If we feel that the administration is deaf to citizens' woes, we must make them sit up and take note. It is time we demanded 'concretised' answers from our elected representatives NOW, not just at election time.
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