Incomplete cement roads add to chaos, congestion

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 07 Nov 2017 09:11:46


Special Correspondent,

The official mess created due to tardy pace of construction has thrown vehicular traffic in city out of gear

Thanks to unimaginative planning of the cement roads in the name of development, the hapless citizens are witnessing congestion, chaos and are going through ordeal to reach their destination. Due to ongoing construction of Cement roads, the smooth flow of traffic has been disrupted. The official mess created by Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) has made life hell for commuters and vehicle drivers. The city of “big-wigs” has been dubbed as city of “Big Traffic Jams.” People are facing hardships due to this mindless work of the local body. Due to unplanned construction of cement roads, the traffic snarls are giving a terrible time to Nagpurians on maximum city roads. People are spending harrowing time in traffic jams while wading through to reach their destinations.

Most of the erstwhile wide roads are blocked, choked, half excavated and closed for traffic due to under constructed cement roads. Some major stretches are also blocked for Metro Rail work, due to which city’s road network is under severe pressure. At many stretches, where cement road works are proposed, the existing road condition has gone from bad to worse.

Surprisingly, the construction of cement roads which began two years ago, is yet to be completed in this era of modern technology. Maximum road stretches taken for concretisation are far away from the completion.

The ‘benevolent NMC’ is extending the time limit of the contractors due to several reasons cited by them and also imposing modest fine on them to avoid criticism. Naturally, this lenient action has failed to deter the contractors, who are carrying out work at leisurely pace unmindful of pain and trauma suffered by Nagpurians. Due to dust and aerial pollution emanating from the construction site, Nagpurians are experiencing asthmatic problem, pain in spine. ON most stretches, hundreds of minor mishaps have taken place, but never reported to police.

The civic body has dug up roads but failed to ensure proper arrangements for smooth flow of traffic. This lack of attention to detail is causing long, tedious jams on several city roads. With the Winter Session of Maharashtra Legislature scheduled to commence in the city from December 11, the woes are likely to increase manifold. The civic body is trying hard to complete the maximum road works but this mess will continue till next two-three years.

Even though the NMC has put a condition in agreements to appoint warden on the cement roads for regulating the traffic but it has not compelled contractors to appoint traffic warden to regulate traffic. The people are forced to spend more time due to traffic jams. There is no co-ordination between the Traffic Police and Civic Body, and people are suffering due to their perceived negligence.

That the work is ‘in progress’, and ‘diversion’, indicates that the authorities have not set any time-frame for completion. Either there is no provision for levying fine for delay in completion of work, or the delay is allowed. The official sources claimed that the civic body has given 11 months time to complete both sides of the road but it seems that the NMC has given extension without levying fine to the contractors in most cases. The road from Rahate Colony T Point on Wardha Road to Matey square and from Matey Square to Ambazari T Point have been extended upto April 30, 2018 without levying any fine. The time limit of Rameshwari road from Dr Ambedkar Square to Ring road has been extended upto November 30, 2017. The NMC has imposed “harsh fine” of Rs 300 per day between March 20, 2017 and November 30, 2017 to this contractor.

The road from Sanjuba High School to Mahakalkar Sabhagruh has been extended upto December 31, 2017 without imposing any fine. The RPTS road from WHC to Wardha road has been extended upto December 31, 2017. The NMC levied fine of Rs 1,000 per day from September 22, 2017. The construction period for road from Gurudeo Nagar square to Bhande Plot Square on Umrer road has been extend for around 10 months from March 1, 2017. Now, the new date for the completion of the road is January 1, 2018. NMC has imposed fine of Rs 1,000 every day for the delay. The fine amount will be deducted from the final bill.

The construction of other cement roads delayed due to various reasons are- Gayatri Madir road from South Ambazari road to Ring Road through IT park, road from Zero Miles to DCP traffic office road, and road from LAD college square to Gandhi Nagar road. Though NMC blocked roads for construction, the activity itself has come to a grinding halt since last 15 days as labours went on Diwali holidays. Cops have placed some barricades on these roads to control traffic, but it has added to the congestion. Recently, some alert citizens removed the barricades on Central Bazar road near Bajaj Nagar square to clear the flow of traffic due to a religious procession.

Further, for construction of cement roads, the street-light connections have been severed. This has further increased the risk of driving on these roads at night. More trouble is in store for Nagpurians in the coming days due to road closures, Metro Rail work, VIP movements and morchas during winter session of State Legislature.

During Winter Session, thousands of additional official and private vehicles come to the city and add to the traffic load. With some roads already blocked or half-excavated in the name of simultaneous development, these additional vehicles are likely to shrink the space further.