Mumbai: Only 2 foot-over-bridges of 12 along JVLR have operational lights

Feb 12, 2018, 21:48 IST | Ranjeet Jadhav

mid-day visits the 12 FOBs along the stretch to find that only two bridges have operational lights

Locals also refrain from using these FOBs. Pics/ Datta KumbharLocals also refrain from using these FOBs. Pics/ Datta Kumbhar

In order to tackle the rise in pedestrian accidents along the Jogeshwari-Vikroli Link Road (JVLR), the MMRDA had spent over Rs 7 crore to build 12 foot over-bridges (FOB), between 2008 and 2012. A decade later, mid-day has found that the FOBs received the same treatment like our city skywalks, which have been rotting in neglect. Visits to these FOBs revealed that only two of them could boast of operational lights.

Less to no lights
mid-day visited four FOBs between JVLR junction and Poonam Nagar on JVLR to find them drenched in darkness. Not surprisingly, not a single pedestrian could be seen availing of the FOB facilities. A local resident from the Shiv Tekdi area said, "Pedestrians routinely take the FOBs during the daytime, but nobody dares to use them after sunset. There are tubelights fitted across most of these bridges, but none of them work. Pedestrians choose to risk their lives by crossing the road instead of taking these bridges.
A visit to the JVLR stretch between Sariput Nagar near Mahakali and IIT-B revealed that only two FOBs had operational lights. Sariput Nagar resident Ankit Mishra, one of the few people mid-day found using the FOB, said, "My family has been living in this area for years, and we wouldn’t advice anyone, especially women, to use these FOBs. The authorities, however, don’t seem to be concerned."

While a few of the FOBs on the Powai Lake stretch have lights fitted on them, most of them have loose tiles dotting the floors. Pan stains and littering along the bridges hinted at less to nil maintenance.

Broken tiles on the bridgesBroken tiles on the bridges

The IIT-B shocker
Despite a high density of population around the IIT-B campus, lights on both FOBs were found to be non-operational. It’s a shocking revelation because the majority of the popular in this area comprises students.

Reacting to the rise in the number of accidents along the JVLR, the MMRDA had urged the Institute of Road Transport and Education (IRTE) to launch a road safety audit in 2008. Following the IRTE report, which demanded construction of FOBs to reduce pedestrian accidents, the MMRDA constructed 12 FOBs along the stretch.

On being contacted Dilip Kawatkar, MMRDA joint project director, told mid-day, "We had handed over the FOBs to the BMC and it is their job to ensure maintenance of the same."

Meanwhile, SO Kori, the chief engineer at BMC, remained unavailable for comment.

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