MBMC spends `100 cr on road repairs only ‘cosmetic’ in nature

Bhayandar : At a time when the cash strapped Mira Bhayandar Municipal Corporation (MBMC)  is staring at the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA) for funds amounting Rs 100 crore for the construction of concrete roads, a startling revelation  has come to light.

The MBMC has spent a whooping Rs 100 crore in the last five years towards road repair works and to fix potholes that continue to resurface at almost all main and arterial roads of the city.

However, officials attached to the public works department claimed that a major chunk of the spending did not pinch the MBMC pocket.

“Although an average of Rs 25 crore  is spent towards road repairs, our actual spending in accordance with the earmarked budget is restricted to just Rs one crore per year, the rest comes from a string of utility agencies who dug up roads for laying piped gas, telecom, internet and power supply cables,” clarified  Executive Engineer Deepak Khambit.

The frequent change in technology by contractors ignoring factors like type of soil, temperature, rainfall, traffic situations and other environmental factors has been blamed for the poor quality of road repair works.

Apart from pressing Jet-Patching machines, the contractors have revived the traditional concrete and bitumen laying process, after using cold mixes which was pegged to be the ideal solution to repair damaged and pockmarked roads in the twin-city.

Any agency that wants to dig roads has to first approach the MBMC with a map of their utilities and details of digging to be undertaken, following payment of digging charges along with deposit, permission is granted.

The laxity of water supply officials has added to the woes as the never-ending underground sewage works continue to take a heavy toll of roads for the past more than five years.

The MBMC is also under the scanner for re-building roads that are still under the defect liability period which mandates concerned contractor to repair and maintain pockmarked roads sans billing for a prescribed time frame.

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Free Press Journal