Mumbai: People, traffic make this Sion-Panvel stretch a nightmare

Aug 06, 2018, 07:05 IST | Suraj Ojha

Heavy density of both residents and vehicles at this pothole-riddled stretch of highway at Mankhurd, means fatal accidents happen both during the day and night

Mumbai: People, traffic make this Sion-Panvel stretch a nightmare
The Mankhurd stretch of the Sion-Panvel Highway is an extremely busy one, with both people and vehicles zipping around at all times of the day. Pic/Rajesh Gupta

Mankhurd
Sion-Panvel Highway

This is one of the busiest stretches of road that connects Mumbai with Navi Mumbai and further to Pune and other places. This stretch is notorious for its potholes and heavy vehicle density. It is owing to this that the road sees accidents at any time of the day or night. Apart from heavy use, there is a huge settlement of people in the area moving to and fro on the road, which is a major reason for accidents here.

Laxmi Baske with a picture of her husband, Pundalik Baske
Laxmi Baske with a picture of her husband, Pundalik Baske

Case studY: In September 2015, Pundalik Baske, 64, who was on his way to attend a religious gathering, died after he was knocked down by an autorickshaw around 7 am while crossing the road. Incidentally, Baske and his wife used to take the same road every day for the last four years. On the day he died, his wife, Laxmi, was not with him as she was finishing household chores.

Anshika Yadav in hospital top
Anshika Yadav in hospital top

“I attended the gathering some time later but did not see him. When I returned home around 10.30 am, I got a call from someone at Rajawadi hospital who told me Pundalik has suffered a head injury,” she said. “I rushed to the hospital with my son and found him in the ICU. He died after two days,” Laxmi said. Baske’s son Vinayak said, “My father never carried a mobile phone but kept a chit in his pocket with our phone numbers. The police filed a case and arrested the accused, who did not have a proper licence. My mother is now very afraid to cross the road and is haunted by memories whenever she goes near the spot.”

Mahima Yadav
Mahima Yadav

On January 16, last year, sisters, Mahima, 9, and Anshika Yadav, 7, suffered serious injuries after they were hit by a car; the person at the wheel was learning to drive. The two girls were on their way to the Deonar Municipal School when the car hit them while they were crossing the road. Bindhwasini Yadav, their aunt who takes care of them, said she usually drops the kids to school, but that day the girls had gone alone. She said Mahima received head injuries and fractured her left leg while Anshika was thrown in the air and got a major blood clot in her stomach. Mahima was bedridden for four months and even now has problems while sitting down. Anshika was bedridden for six months.

Problems
> Long stretch has no foot over bridge
> Area has heavy traffic and heavy population on both sides of the road

Solutions
> Building an FOB or subway
> Need to depute police personnel in the area, especially during early morning hours

Locals speak
Manoj Radhe Kishan, Resident, PMGP Colony
Manoj Radhe Kishan‘There is no FOB at this spot and we have approached officials and political leaders who have promised to build one, but aside from assurances nothing has been done in the past 20 years. As people live on both sides of the road and schools, hospitals and other important amenities exist on both sides, crossing it becomes necessary’

Nasiman Salmani, Local resident
Nasiman Salmani‘Motorists drive rashly on this stretch, which leads to accidents. Currently, a flyover is being constructed and guards do sit below it, but are of hardly any use as they do not help those wishing to cross the road.’

OfficialSpeak
Nitin Bobade, Senior inspector, Mankhurd police station
Nitin Bobade‘Usually the speed of vehicles on this road is more than 80 kmph and people cross the road because they have work on either side. Uncontrolled vehicles are the ones causing mishaps. Now that a flyover is being built, large vehicles for Pune and beyond will take that, which could reduce accidents here. I will be writing soon to the authority concerned asking them to create a passage for pedestrians so that accidents are reduced’

ExpertSpeak
Jitendra Gupta, road expert
Jitendra Gupta‘Once the signal turns green, all vehicles take left and right turns without slowing down. And, since the road is very broad at this spot, when pedestrians suddenly see a vehicle coming towards them, they do not know where to go. Most motorists who jump signals in hurry, are the ones who are caught in accidents’

Total Accidents
33
For 2017 and 2018 (till July 15)

Types of accidents:
Accidents of pedestrians hit by speeding cars occur regularly. Also, rash driving by heavy vehicles is a major cause of accidents

Casualties
13
Deaths

05
Major injuries

15
Minor injuries

Source: Traffic department

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