Bengaluru: A woman, riding pillion on her husband’s bike, fell and died of a head injury when the bike crashed in one of the many potholes of Bangalore. But it is her husband who is being blamed for the death.
The police have booked Om Prakash for criminal negligence following the death of his wife, 25-year-old Stuti Pandey. The two were software professionals from Madhya Pradesh and Om Prakash has gone back to Satna for the last rites of his wife.
The police case against Om Prakash, however, has triggered outrage on social media. The police say pending investigation, the case against Om Prakash is routine, since in every accident case, the driver is booked.
But the residents of Bengaluru are livid. They allege that the civic authorities, instead of owning up responsibility, were passing the buck. The condition of infrastructure in India’s software capital is considered to be at an all-time low – its lakes filled with toxic waste, its roads with garbage and potholes, its traffic with crippling jams.
It has even given rise to something called pothole art, where local artists have created lifesize crocodiles and anacondas and even lotuses inside potholes that have been around for weeks.
Concerned with the response, the government held an emergency meeting on Monday. Transport minister Ramalinga Reddy said if officials were found to have been at fault, they would be punished.
The city’s only no-pothole road is the one at the centre of the city that leads to the state legislature. It was built two years ago, at a cost of Rs. 25 lakh – 25% more than what is spent on a normal road.
The authorities have set an October 21 deadline for filling all potholes in Bengaluru.
BBMP bumps into 1,500 potholes in a single day
Bengaluru (DHNS): The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) started a fresh survey of potholes on Sunday, days after a woman techie fell off a bike and died when her husband bumped into a pothole.
The results are telling. In a single day, officials stumbled upon 1,500 potholes on arterial and sub-arterial roads. This is in addition to the 3,500 potholes identified in the last four months, a top BBMP official said. The Bangalore Development Authority (BDA) has also identified 40 potholes since September 18 on the 47 km Outer Ring Road, which is under its jurisdiction.
BBMP Commissioner G Kumar Naik claimed that every month, for the last four months, the Palike has been spending Rs 1.98 crore on filling potholes. “When we had started filling potholes, over a year ago, we found 29,000. The work is still on as there is no permanent solution. A weak spot is a weak spot,” he said.
A BBMP official said, following complaints, the Palike had filled 5,000 potholes in the last four to five months.
Transport Minister Ramalinga Reddy told Deccan Herald that of the 20,000 km of road under BBMP limits, around 2,000 km are arterial and sub-arterial roads. “Number of potholes is not important. Our priority is to fix them in time,” said Reddy.
The potholes that were fixed before the BBMP polls resurfaced. And the blame game is on between the BBMP, BDA and Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board. The Palike said a survey of road length and number of potholes has not been undertaken in BDA layouts like Sir M Visvesvaraiah Layout, Anjanapura and Banashankari.
Subhash Shetty, a resident of Dasarahalli, said sub-standard work had left people agitated. “The stretch from NTTF till Peenya 2nd Stage was asphalted a couple of months ago. But the asphalt gave way during the recent rains,” said Shetty.
The story is no different on Mysore Road, J P Nagar Main Road, the newly-reopened Cubbon Road, Kasturba Road, Bannerghatta Road, Sampige Road, roads in Sanjaynagar, Koramanagala, Madiwala, Okalipuram, Seshadripuram, BTM Layout, Banashankari, Malleswaram and Rajajinagar.
“The BBMP had tarred prime spots like Kamakshipalya, Sunkdakatte, Housing Board, T Dasarahalli and other places. But one downpour ruined everything,” said Manjula, a resident of Kamakshipalya.