Highway to Hell! Lancy D’Costa’s Email to PM gets Dilapidated Stretch of NH-66 Repaired
Mangaluru : It’s a highway to Hell ! We are talking about NH-66. It happens again and again and again- year and year and year after- and at the same locations on this highway. Heavy rains, heavy traffic and alternating periods of warm and cold have scarred this highway for potholes pop up — and this has formed a worse-case scenario for repair crews who are struggling to find and fix all the emerging potholes. But are they doing the job right-Don’t think so. Throwing some loose stuff in a hole and just hoping the traffic driving over it will fix it, will not serve the purpose. The evidence now says otherwise. The only way to solve the current pothole mess is to lay a two-layered concrete road with a seal coat but the problem is, our authorities are busy playing blame games.
(Above are the pictures of the road before repair)
One part of this NH-66 which gets bad every time/every year is the stretch between the Kulur and Kulur Church, going from Panambur to Mangaluru. But when it comes to fixing such dilapidated road, the NH authorities are slow and careless. As long as cheap quality tar is being used and layered too thinly, we will continue to have these problems every year. It’s an obvious pattern and I wonder why nobody is looking into this, or better yet, our officials should visit other metropolitan cities in India or other countries and see how they are coping with this matter.
Driving/riding on such roads, and for that matter, is like an obstacle course. Drivers keep swerving and maneuvering to make sure they miss every pothole. These potholes have also worsened the chronic traffic jams which motorists face everyday. Anyone who has had the misfortune of commuting on this stretch of NH-66 will testify what a great pain the ride is – literally – owing to the numerous potholes that punctuate the road. Bet a ride on this stretch is akin to a ride on a ‘ camel’s ‘ back- just bumpy! And one commuter who takes this road every day from his residence in the City to his workplace in Panambur on his two-wheeler is Lancy D’Costa, who couldn’t bear the inconvenience and nuisance caused by this dilapidated stretch, decided to approach the NH authorities to fix this road for the benefit of other motorists too who ply on this stretch.
(Above are the pictures of the road after repair)
One day protest or bundh to fix such issues will not work-instead others should follow what Lancy did. He took the initiative constantly email/write letters to the NH authorities about the bad condition of this stretch of road. Having getting no quick response or any action taken by the NH officials, he warned them of getting his message on this issue to the notice of PM Narendra Modi- and he did it eventually. And for his surprise, within few days he got an acknowledgement from the PM’s office on receiving his email of grievance pertaining to bad roads. Lancy was also surprised that within the next few days, the stretch of road near Kulur bridge/Kulur Church was fixed, although not 100% perfect but bearable for easy travel of motorists without any hurdles or hassles like earlier.
The following message was sent to PM Narendra Modi, after no proper response was received from National Highway authorities :
Namasthe Shri Modiji,
I am very sad to bring to your notice a few lines about the pathetic condition of NH 66 near Kulur bridge, opposite Kulur Church-Mangaluru. Kindly send your official to look into this situation. Few days ago I had brought this matter to the notice of Highway authorities, but no action has been taken by then till now. Kindly do the needful
The matter brought to the notice of highway authorities in a letter to them is as below:
I am very sad to inform you about the condition of the NH 66 at the end of Kulur old bridge towards Mangalore from Panambur (just near the Kulur Church). I am having doubt that all the officials are blind in the department and they can’t see the situation of the road at this place ?. If you want to see the picture of this place kindly contact Mangalore DC and get the photo of this place. This stretch of the road has been like this many many times, and no proper fixing of this stretch has been done. Thousands of vehicles are passing through this NH daily. People are traveling by this hell with holding their life in hand.
Kindly send your official (with correct eyes) to this place and take necessary action within a week , Otherwise I will forward this mail to NH Minister and also PM Narendra Modiji.
Centralized Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGRAMS) Brought to you by Department of Administrative Reforms & Public Grievances Government of India
Registration Number : PMOPG/E/2016/0062815
Name Of Complainant : LANCY D COSTA
Date of Receipt : 27 Feb 2016
Received by : Prime Ministers Office
Forwarded to : PIU Mangalore
Officer name : Sh. Z.Samson Vijay Kumar
Officer Designation : DGM
Contact Address : Mangalore
Contact Number : 082444254499
Date of Action : 22 Mar 2016
Potholes aren’t just a nuisance for drivers; they also constitute dangerous safety hazards that can produce substantial damage to vehicles, force drivers to veer suddenly in traffic, or even cause the driver to lose control of a vehicle after contact. The gaping streets can also damage a car’s alignment and suspension system. The road repair crew should take quick action to fix the potholes before they get deep and worse — thereby avoiding severe driving hazards and vehicle damages. So, while waiting for these roads to be restored for a smooth ride, just brace yourself because it once again pothole season when the monsoon season will be approaching soon. And for sure, the authorities will not take any action, until a major accident takes place, due to potholes? Until then you’ll have to bear with the potholes or curse someone at the NH department— and still keep driving/riding safe.
What initiative Lancy D’Costa took to settle this road issue is an perfect example other citizens also need to follow in his footsteps- if you come across bad spots on NH-66 in your area, there should be many on this long stretch of highway which runs for miles from City onwards- just don’t ignore the issue, email or write to concerned NH authorities- don’t give up, follow up with your grievances, and if no action is taken by the NH authorities go to the higher authorities, may be even the PM. This is the only way civic issues could be solved.