Travelling on Pathetic & Potholed NH 75! a Nightmare for Motorists, especially 2-Wheeler Riders

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Travelling on Pathetic & Potholed NH 75! a Nightmare for Motorists, especially 2-Wheeler Riders

Mangaluru: Usually when I go for news coverage of Father Muller Hospital-Thumbay, I get a “Presidential Ride”, with the Director of Father Muller Charitable Institution Fr Richard Coelho’s car. But recently it so happened when I had to go for a coverage FMH-Thumbay, since there was no space in Director’s car, I had no other option than to ride my scooter, all the way from the City to Thumbay on the treacherous, dilapidated and potholed riddled NH 75. Usually reaching from City to Thumbay takes about 20- 25 minutes, but with the pathetic and potholed road, it took me almost 40 minutes, trying to go slow to avoid the potholes and be safe. The dark stretches on NH 66 are causing hardship to motorists, especially two-wheeler riders. Also with the Street lights not working on several stretches of the highway is another risk to lives.

Activist G.K. Bhat, who has been fighting for the cause of having working streetlights, said that despite several representations to the National Highway Authority of India, officials have not bothered to address the issue. Elected representatives, including Member of Parliament Nalin Kumar Kateel, have not bothered to take up the issue. The issue was not taken up even after the recent death of a police constable after he hit an Earthmover parked on NH in the night. And with the patchwork going on at certain spots, NH 66 is filled with dust, a health hazard for motorists. It is particularly very unsafe for motor vehicles due to the non-existence of work markings on the NH. The stretch is filled with dust and gets slushy during the rains. The roads are barely visible at night due to the absence of reflector markings indicating the ongoing expansion works.

Harish Shetty, who owns Shetty Lunch Home in Adyar (also in Mangaluru speaking to Team Mangalorean said, “I take this stretch of NH66 daily from Mangaluru to Adyar to drop and pick my wife at the restaurant in Adyar, and it has been a horrible and terrible drive navigating through the potholes and dilapidated NH. Recently I spent a few thousand on fixing my car, due to the rough ride on this treacherous stretch of NH 66. Seems like our elected leaders care less about the safety of the motorists, who are facing hardship travelling on this pathetic road. Hope this report will awaken the concerned NHAI authorities to quickly repair the potholed NH for the safety of the motorists”.

Motorists are having a tough time negotiating the unscientific road works particularly at night time. This has led to vehicles breaking down and getting unrecognisable due to the dust. There are potholes and craters everywhere throughout the stretch. The contractor has failed to provide good motorable or alternative road as per conditions in the contract “I’m not sure whether traders and others on the flanks of Mangaluru- Bengaluru National Highway 75 wore masks during the COVID-19 pandemic, but for sure they’re wearing one ever since the four-lane work of the highway between B.C. Road and Periyashanthi (Dharmasthala Cross) commenced last September,” quipped a resident of BC road.

With thousands of vehicles, from the light motor to heavy to very heavy, plying on the crucial highway connecting the port city with the State capital, dust clouds could be seen enveloping passing vehicles and adjacent buildings. The contractor — KNR Constructions, Hyderabad — sprays water three- four times a day on the carriageway, which evaporates in minutes due to the scorching sun, said a resident of Farangipet. The problem lies with the contractor failing to ensure the existing carriageway remains motorable during the construction period or provide an alternative service road for regular traffic. Neither elected representatives nor the NHAI or district administration appears bothered about this violation of the terms of the contract said a resident of Mani that has been bearing the brunt of the four-lane work.

Residents and road users, who had to bear with a slushy highway during the rains, have now been suffering from the dust. Regular commuters know where the potholes are and can avoid them as far as possible after the first encounter; but think about others who use the highway, especially at night. Some potholes are so deep that they will certainly cause extensive damage to vehicle suspension and discs. When such potholes arise, NHAI authorities put the blame on rains, and not on their shabby and unscientific work. With so many elected leaders travelling on this stretch of NH 75, including MP Nalin Kumar Kateel, MLAs from the Dakshina Kannada district (both BJP & Congress) among others, every one of them has turned a blind towards this problem.

Residents and road users, who had to bear with a slushy highway during the rains, have now been suffering from the dust. Regular commuters know where the potholes are and can avoid them as far as possible after the first encounter; but think about others who use the highway, especially at night. Some potholes are so deep that they will certainly cause extensive damage to vehicle suspension and discs. When such potholes arise, NHAI authorities put the blame on rains, and not on their shabby and unscientific work. With so many elected leaders travelling on this stretch of NH 75, including MP Nalin Kumar Kateel, MLAs from the Dakshina Kannada district (both BJP & Congress) among others, every one of them has turned a blind towards this problem.

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