In 9 days, pot­hole of­fi­cer re­ceives 70 com­plaints

HC Ap­pointee Asks Agen­cies For Re­port

The Times of India (Mumbai edition) - - TIMES CITY - Su­jit.Ma­hamulkar @times­group.com

Mum­bai: The nodal of­fi­cer ap­pointed by the Bom­bay high court to look into pot­hole-re­lated griev­ances has re­ceived 70 com­plaints in nine days. Tak­ing se­ri­ous cog­nizance of these com­plaints, the nodal of­fi­cer has in­structed the BMC and other agen­cies con­cerned to sub­mit a com­pli­ance re­port on a weekly ba­sis.

Fol­low­ing a Bom­bay high court di­rec­tive, the Ma­ha­rash­tra State Le­gal Ser­vices Au­thor­ity (MSLSA) has ap­pointed Shrikant Kulka­rni as the nodal of­fi­cer in Mum­bai to reg­is­ter pot­hole-re­lated com­plaints. Of the 70 com­plaints re­ceived be­teen Septem­ber 8 and Septem­ber 16, some were sent by hand de­liv­ery and others through post and e-mails. Kulka­rni has called ajoint meet­ing with all agen­cies that main­tain roads in the city, in­clud­ing MMRDA, Mhada, MbPT, CR, WR, MSRDC, MIDC, PWD and the Dairy De­vel­op­ment de­part­ment, on Thurs­day.

The nodal of­fi­cer started re­ceiv­ing com­plaints im­me­di­ately af­ter a public no­tice was is­sued on Septem­ber 8. “Apart from com­plaints be­ing recorded at our of­fice, they will be sent to BMC which cov­ers max­i­mum

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road net­work in the city. In case BMC finds that the com­plaint per­tains to a road main­tained by another agency, it will be for­warded to that re­spec­tive au­thor­ity. All agen­cies will fi­nally have to sub­mit their re­ports to the nodal of­fi­cer,” Kulka­rni said.

“Also, once the com­plaint is ad­dressed, of­fi­cials have to upload a pic­ture on the web­site to show that the work has been com­pleted so that the com­plainant can check if the pot­hole has been re­paired,” he added.

Vinod Chi­tore, di­rec­tor of en­gi­neer­ing ser­vices de­part­ment, who also has the charge of chief en­gi­neer of roads, has said that as of now, BMC has re­ceived 50 com­plaints and 40% of them have al­ready been at­tended to. “We have our own sys­tem of re­ceiv­ing com­plaints and ad­dress­ing them, which will con­tinue. How­ever, BMC will also at­tend to com­plaints sent by the nodal of­fi­cer,” he said.

An MMRDA of­fi­cial, how­ever, said they had no idea about a meet­ing on Thurs­day.

Jus­tice Gau­tam Pa­tel had writ­ten to the chief jus­tice on July 24, 2013, high­light­ing the is­sue of pa­thetic con­di­tion of roads which not only in­con­ve­nienced cit­i­zens but also led to ca­su­al­ties, es­pe­cially in case of bik­ers. He had an­nexed a com­pi­la­tion of news re­ports. The court con­verted his let­ter into a suo motu PIL.

On Au­gust 3, tak­ing note of the is­sue, the court ap­pointed a nodal of­fi­cer for Mum­bai and other dis­tricts.

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