Streetlights in Mumbai: Around 2-3% of them are defunct, civilians take on social media to inform BEST

The lanes and roads in many parts of the island city have gone dark as streetlights are not functioning. Mumbaikars from different parts of Central and Southern Mumbai have raised this issue on social media and complained to Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport (BEST) Undertaking about the same.

According to sources in the BEST, there is at least 2-3 per cent out of the total 40000-odd streetlight poles coming under the jurisdiction of the Undertaking. This comes to around 800-1200 such poles that aren’t functioning. In fact on social media like Twitter, a campaign called #BattiGul is also seen where people are posting pictures of streetlights that are not functioning along with the locations.

For instance, one Chetan Kamble mentioned about this streetlight pole near Prabhadevi station not working. Likewise, another person mentioned about streetlights not functioning at Agripada. Some of the other locations where the complaints are seen are Wadala, Prateeksha Nagar - Sion, Nariman Point etc.

“The streetlight maintenance team under the Supply department has been doing an abysmal job. There are so many areas across the city where streetlights are not functioning,” said BEST Committee member and Opposition Leader at BMC, Ravi Raja.

For all these complaints, the BEST simply mentioned that their operation and maintenance team would look into it and rectify it. Sources in BEST said that there are namely issues with the cables supplying electricity to these streetlight poles and that they are working on the same.

“At many locations, we find that due to the on-going Metro rail work, the heavy machines digging roads, damage the cables. This is despite all our efforts to shift our utilities in order to avoid the damage,” said a BEST official.

Another problem plaguing the streetlights is that a considerable number of them are corroded and need replacement. This problem is going on since early 2018 and the BEST officials claim that they have identified them for the same.

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