Sunday, August 1, 2010

Rains Favors City and Blame game Starts after Road Caves In

The mess on Aurobindo Marg keeps growing. The road caved in at several places on Saturday, after showers lashed the capital, and traffic had to be diverted on both sides of the carriageway. But none of the agencies involved in the work here was willing to take responsibility. The streetscaping work being carried out along the stretch was also in a shambles due to the heavy rain.

The reason for the caving in at many places was a matter of debate with PWD maintaining it had handed over the stretch to Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) about one-and-a-half years ago for construction of the Gurgaon Metro line. The Metro, in turn, claimed that the road had caved in due to a faulty drainage system, which is maintained by MCD.

At one place, a five-feet deep hole had developed along the divider and many vehicles got stuck there during the rain. The traffic coming in from IIT and going towards AIIMS was diverted towards Green Park while the traffic from AIIMS was diverted from Gautam Nagar. DMRC was seen carrying out repair work.

‘‘While the road comes under our jurisdiction, it has not been handed over to us by Delhi Metro yet,’’ said a PWD official. ‘‘The road keeps caving in as there is a leaking drainage barrel under it. When the road caved in last time, it was decided Metro would restore the entire stretch and hand it over to us. As far as the drainage system goes, it should be fixed by MCD as it comes under their jurisdiction. DJB also needs to clean its sewer as it seems to be overflowing.’’

DMRC, meanwhile, maintained that at the core of the problem is a storm water drain at Gautam Nagar which was covered by MCD last year. MCD, on its part, claimed it was not responsible for cleaning of the drain since DMRC was yet to hand over the stretch back to PWD.

Meanwhile, another road caved in at GK-II near Masjid Moth. According to PWD, the road sank because DJB had laid a pipe here six months back using trench-less technology and many cavities had not been filled. The MCD, however, denied the allegations. One more cave in was reported from the road in front of the Metro station in Mehrauli.