However, Manjunath Prasad defended the BBMP and stated that the civic body could not be blamed entirely for the deteriorating situation of roads and passed the buck to the BWSSB.

23747 Bluru roads have potholes BBMP Chief comes clean on 43 potholes only claimRepresentation Photo
news Civic Issues Thursday, November 01, 2018 - 15:12

On October 23, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) had told the Karnataka High Court that there were only 43 potholes in the city. However, the BBMP Commissioner has now claimed that BBMP engineers had initially submitted false information and there are, in fact, over 27,000 roads in the city that contain potholes.

“There are roads running up to 14,000 km in Bengaluru and there are 93,000 roads in total. Of these, around 2,000 km are main roads. The engineers have given wrong information about the number of potholes on these roads,” BBMP Commissioner Manjunath Prasad said.

The BBMP has so far surveyed 83,282 roads and has found that 59,539 roads do not have potholes in them. “Of the 83,282 roads, 23,747 have been dug up for various public works,” Manjunath Prasad added.

Of the total number of main roads, 44 of them, running up to 175 km, have been dug up by either the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board (BWSSB), the BESCOM or other civic agencies to lay underground pipes or cables. “This has to be submitted to the court,” the Commissioner said.

However, Manjunath Prasad defended the BBMP and stated that the civic body could not be blamed entirely for the deteriorating situation of roads and passed the buck to the BWSSB.

“Sewer lines, water supply pipes and electricity cables are all important for residents. We cannot ignore providing those facilities. The BWSSB has set aside Rs 5,100 crore for various projects. Of this, Rs 800 crore has been set aside for road repairs. Most of the roads have been damaged because they have been dug up. I have mentioned this issue to BWSSB many times. The problem is that as one agency fixes the roads after digging it, another agency is digging up the road for other works,” Manjunath Prasad added.

Manjunath Prasad also said that there were several mud roads located in the 110 villages within BBMP limits and that the road construction works there would begin soon.

The Karnataka High Court has taken the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike to task on multiple occasions regarding the issue of potholes in Bengaluru. Livid at the Palike’s snail-paced work, the BBMP councillors demanded that the officials give them exact figures of why Bengaluru’s roads are riddled with potholes.

“Why is the BBMP being pulled up by the High Court again and again? Once for potholes, then for garbage and stormwater drains. Why are the works not being carried out properly? What are the engineers doing?” questioned Leader of Opposition in the BBMP Council, Padmanabha Reddy.

On August 1, the High Court ordered the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) to remove all illegal flex banners in the city on that day itself. After little progress was made to this end, the High Court reiterated its stance on August 10 ordering the removal of illegal flex banners before Independence Day. 

On September 20, the same court while hearing the case on the number of potholes in the city's roads rapped the BBMP and ordered that all potholes be filled by the next day. The deadline has since been extended multiple times after it emerged that there were potholes even in the wards that the BBMP claimed were pothole free.

On October 29, the HC once again set a deadline, this time asking the BBMP to ensure that Bengaluru streets are garbage free by the end of the month. The deadline has since been extended to Deepavali. 

 The BWSSB, meanwhile, has come forward and set itself a September 2021 deadline to clean Bengaluru's lakes. It has claimed that the lakes in the city will be pollution-free. 

Correction: The story had stated that "59,539 roads have potholes". The BBMP Chief clarified that 23,747 roads have potholes. The error is regretted.


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