Mumbai: A Mumbai resident has claimed to have collected more than 27,000 photos and videos of potholes as part of his campaign to highlight poor condition of roads in the country’s financial capital. Not stopping at that, the man, Navin Lade, wants Mumbai to figure in record books for its poor road condition.
However, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), tasked with maintaining roads, has dismissed Lade’s campaign as a “publicity stunt”. Lade launched the campaign on July 17 and has claimed to have collected 27,366 photos and videos of potholes across the metropolis till now with support from his team members and local residents. These photos and videos have been uploaded on a dedicated website, www.mumbaipotholes.com.
He has claimed support for his campaign from people who have been victims of poor condition of the city roads. Lade has approached the Guinness Book of World Records, the Limca Book of Records, the India Book of Records, the World Book of Records and the Golden Book of Records for including Mumbai as the “city with most potholes” though no such category currently exists. Lade’s name figures in the India Book of Records for “Maximum Collection of Newspaper Articles on Eyes”. “The Guinness World Records, the Limca Book of Records, the India Book of Records and others do not maintain any category for most potholes in cities. But I am after them to create such a new category and hopeful to get it,” he said.
Lade said his drive is aimed at creating public awareness on the issue and shaming the BMC, thereby forcing it to focus on maintaining roads. “Efforts to address pothole menace are nothing but a drama. Mumbai has become a death trap. Potholes have become silent killers and also causing life-long pain in spine and joints.” Asked what mechanism he has in place to avoid duplication in counting potholes, Lade said, “We have received over 40,000 complaints so far containing location and name of the complainant. Our sheet filters the names that appear twice reporting from the same location.
“Besides, our members have their own fleet of vehicles. They go to the spot and verify the potholes individually so that no pothole is counted twice.” When contacted, a senior BMC official termed the campaign as a “publicity stunt”. “A single pothole can be reported by various persons coming from various places. We have developed a mechanism to attend to potholes quickly as and when reported,” he said.The richest civic body of the country has claimed to have introduced several measures, including cold mix technology, to fill potholes.