Despite spending crore of rupees on pothole filling every year, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) does not have a proper method to repair potholes on city roads. It has come to light after a ward officer asked the civic roads department to prepare a standard operating procedure (SOP) for pothole filling works.
In a letter to chief engineer (roads), Ramakant Biradar, Assistant Commissioner of G-North ward has demanded a SOP for pothole repairs at ward level. He has also said that the material received from Worli asphalt plant for pothole filling is not up to the mark.
“In G-North ward, the pothole filling work is on at Dadar, for which asphalt macadam is supplied by the Worli asphalt plant. However, after filling potholes with this material, it is observed that macadam and asphalt is getting separated even after little downpour. Hence potholes are created again and again on roads. The Worli asphalt plant should prepare a seal coat for pothole filling works,” Biradar mentioned in his letter.
In addition to this, a SOP should be prepared for pothole filling works at ward level, which will help us to carry out pothole repair works in a technically proper way. Biradar’s letter comes in the wake of MNS corporator Sandeep Deshpande’s threat to ‘kidnap’ him if he fails to tackle pothole problems in his ward.
Biradar has denied his letter has anything to do with MNS’ threat. He said that the SOP for pothole filling is there, but it needs to be improved. He also refuted that the material received for pothole filling works is sub-standard.
“I have demanded that we should receive both the types of material for pothole repairs, thick as well as thin, in equal measures. The thin material used for making seal coat on potholes is supplied in less quantity. Hence, I have said that the asphalt plant should prepare a seal coat for pothole filling works,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Mumbai police team has arrested two engineers, who worked for contractors allegedly involved in the Rs352-crore road work scam, on Thursday. The civic chief Ajoy Mehta had ordered the inspection of 14 roads in the island city, 11 in western suburbs and nine in the eastern suburbs after receiving a letter from the mayor Snehal Ambekar.
The arrested engineers , Ashok Padamsingh Pawar (57) was the chief engineer of Roads and traffic department and Uday Namdeo Murudkar (54) chief engineer Vigilance department were responsible for the shoddy quality of the roads. They got auditors to clear the work and then got the bill sanctioned.