Mumbai: Voicing concern over the unchanged, deplorable condition of roads in the city, the Bombay High Court on Tuesday asked the Maharashtra government why it has not spent even a small portion of its income from toll collection to maintain roads, especially the Sion-Panvel Highway. A division bench of Justices Ranjit More and Bharati Dangre made the observations while hearing a Criminal Public Interest Litigation (CRPIL) highlighting the sorry state of the Sion-Panvel highway.
The petition, filed by advocate Deepak Singh claimed, at least 200 people have died on the Sion-Panvel highway in the last two years, owing to the bad condition of the road. He further drew the bench’s attention to the fact that nearly 300 persons have died on the arterial roads, in the last two years. Singh further informed the bench that the condition of the roads has been unchanged for decades, despite the fact that citizens have been paying toll to use this highway.
Having heard the submission, Justice More said, “It is unfortunate that the situation of roads and highways in and around Mumbai has not improved at least since the last 25 years. This is the situation even after numerous PILs have been filed in this court and several orders are passed from time-to-time.” “The government and its authorities have been collecting a handsome amount in the form of toll from citizens. Why can’t the government use some of this money to repair the potholes and maintain the roads?” Justice More asked.