Chief Commissioner Tushar Giri Nath says “I start my day at 6 am”, orders all Bengaluru zonal Commissioners to be in the field 2 days a week
Giri Nath lays special emphasis on pothole repairs in Bengaluru’s ‘VVIP’ East zone
Unhappy with the pace and nature of pothole-filling in Bengaluru, BBMP Chief Commissioner Tushar Giri Nath pulled up his team of engineers at a meeting on Saturday and ordered them to use 500 loads of tar in the coming days to ensure that the city is pothole-free.
Giri Nath directed the use of around 25 loads of tar in the next two days (May 28 and May 29 night) in the entire city as well as to ensure that the ‘VVIP’ East zone is pothole-free. The civic chief warned that chief engineers of the respective zones would be held responsible if pothole-filling is not done as per schedule.
Interestingly, the civic chief’s fire-fighting mode comes in advance of the Karnataka High Court hearing a pothole petition on Monday, May 31.
It was TheBengaluruLive which reported first that the city has nearly 10,000 potholes and that BBMP feared that opening the ‘FixMyStreet’ app to the public would throw up many more.
JMC has been awarded the contract for pothole repairs in the city. The agency was penalised Rs 5 lakh recently after it failed to provide sufficient pothole-filling material in the West zone.
As per sources, Giri Nath expressed unhappiness over the number of potholes being highest in East zone — the VVIP zone which has dense traffic movement – and tasked his engineers to fill all the potholes by Sunday (May 29) night.
Giri Nath was also not happy with his team’s response on the size of the potholes in sq m in the city, and ordered physical measurements of all such spots.
Sources told TheBengaluruLive that the city’s around 10,000 potholes counted through ‘FixMyStreet’ are reportedly 14,586 sq m in area – with a single pothole around 5 to 8 sq m.
Engineers’ labour gripes
“Engineers who were part of the meeting said that arranging labour for the pothole-filling work in the city is a big task,” said a source after the Chief Commissioner directed his team to undertake pothole-filling day and night.
Giri Nath, who is keen on Bengalureans having a pothole-free ride on the city roads, reportedly said that engineers who are working during the day will have to work at night too to ensure there are no potholes.
The engineers and zonal Commissioners at the meeting reportedly assured the civic chief that all 10,000 potholes in the city would be patched by the first week of June.
“I want to see all my zonal Commissioners in the field two days in a week, once during the day and another time at night. I leave home at 6 am and I want everyone to start early to work for a better Bengaluru,” Giri Nath said.
‘Magic’ of 10,000 potholes!
Ironically, three months ago, all the BBMP engineers had given an undertaking to the former Chief Commissioner that the city was pothole-free – following the allocation of Rs 20 lakh to each ward. Sources have questioned how around 10,000 potholes have emerged despite Rs 20 lakh being spent in each ward for the repair work.
Chief’s warning on debris
Meanwhile, Giri Nath also warned of taking action against assistant engineers of the wards concerned for not clearing debris and other materials dumped illegally on the roads. He also ordered seizure of materials illegally kept on roads, whether by BWSSB, Bescom, GAIL Gas or any other agency.