Large potholes and patches of road washed away can be seen on many arterial stretches in Hyderabad.

Rains crumble Hyderabad roads municipal body identifies 4000 potholes
news Infrastructure Monday, August 05, 2019 - 16:28

In a sight that is all too familiar to the residents of Hyderabad, incessant rains lashing the city over the last few days, have exposed the city's crumbling roads. Large potholes and asphalt washed away can be seen on many arterial stretches. 

Even the Punjagutta and Begumpet flyovers aren't exempt from this, which has resulted in crawling traffic and potential accidents waiting to happen.    

Taking stock of this, the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) held a meeting earlier this week, and identified 987 patches of road that washed away along with 4,000 potholes. 

Allocating Rs 50 crore for repair works, GHMC Commissioner M Dana Kishore said, "Apart from filling potholes, the repair work will be taken up on damaged roads of various routes on war-footing basis."

The GHMC also said that they had deployed 150 monsoon relief teams, to work around the clock, in  three shifts, to take up the repair work. 

The municipal body added that 600 km of road that was laid in the city recently, was taken up by contractors on a Pre-Planned Preventative Maintenance (PPM) basis.

An additional Rs 3 crore was allotted to repair roads under the Strategic Road Development Programme (SRDP). The GHMC also took up inspection of old buildings to check their structural stability.

While the GHMC stated that it has fixed over 2,000 potholes and is working non-stop to fix the roads, many have questioned, why the roads crumble in first place. 

Why do Hyderabad's roads crumble?

Dr LH Rao, a building material expert, says that the GHMC largely only does 'temporary constructions'.

"They wait for disaster to strike and then attend to it. They're simply putting loose sand and cement as a mitigation measure and one rain washes it out. Its cost cutting that only benefits the contractors," Rao, who served as the head of National Council for Cement & Building Materials, states.

He also says, that there is only one solution, if the issue has to be tackled.

"It should be done in a phased manner, on a priority basis. While cement and bitumen do take time to set in when a road is laid, there are rapid hardening chemicals available today, which are able to decrease the waiting period to between 3 and 7 days, before they can take the load," Dr Rao says.

“One year, if they spend little time and money, it can prevent so much wastage in the long run. If commuters are explained that alternate roads need to be taken for a few days, they will cooperate, because they are facing damage to the vehicle and also getting into accidents," he adds.

Speaking to TNM, Padmanabha Reddy from the Forum for Good Governance said that it is an issue with the quality of roads, as well as corruption within the GHMC.

"A failure to clear the stormwater drains results in them choking up, and the roads turning into nalas," he says. 

"There is also a lack of supervision. The roads should be elevated towards the centre and lower towards the sides. If that is maintained, potholes will be there only at the corners, but in Hyderabad, we are seeing them in the middle of the road. There is also a lot of corruption in road maintenance works. There should also be a master plan for the roads or we will face this every year," he added. 

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