Bengaluru: Nine road accidents due to potholes since Oct 2021

Potholes have continued to remain death traps for Bengaluru residents despite the slew of complaints by citizens. This week, another person succumbed to death due to a pothole-ridden road. A 55-year-old bike-borne man became a casualty after a tractor ran over him when he slipped while trying to avoid a pothole, according to a report by the Hindustan Times, Livemint’s sister publication.

The daily said that nine people have lost their lives due to road accidents since October 2021. The victim has been identified as Kumar H, a resident of Marappanapalya. The incident occurred at Subramanyanagar, near Rajajinagar in the city.

According to the CCTV footage of the accident, the motorist was trying to overtake the tractor when he slipped on a stretch of road that was not asphalted

The Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) has put a blame on rain and rough weather for potholes. But activists said that corruption, structural issues, and lack of accountability are the reasons behind the poor road infrastructure.

While the Karnataka high court has pulled up the civic body several times, the BBMP has missed the deadline time and again.

On 2 November, the Karnataka High Court directed the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to conduct an inspection on the quality of the potholes filling or repair work is undertaken by the BBMP and its contractors, and to submit a detailed report within four weeks.

BBMP, the city’s civic body, submitted a report to the HC on the status of the pothole-filling work undertaken. It was submitted that out of the 25,032 potholes identified, 13,843 were filled up.

The HC noted that even after six years of the PIL along with several orders of the HC over the years, and several reports and affidavits submitted by the BBMP, “the road conditions in Bengaluru city is not very positively changed and the unfortunate sufferers are the citizens of the city.”

The NHAI representative will survey whether the pothole repair work is as per the contract and also whether the work is satisfactory. It will then give an independent opinion of the pothole-filling work and make suggestions. The report will also indicate whether there is a dereliction of duty by the BBMP and failure on part of the contractors. The court said that NHAI’s survey will not stop the work already in progress and BBMP can continue with it.

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