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Dombivili citizens suffer as KDMC, MSEB and contractor pass the buck

Friday, April 12, 2019
Text & Pictures By Shrikant Khuperkar

High Tension (HT) electrical cable lying haphazard on ground, dug out roads, spare material strewn everywhere, unmarked excavation site and pedestrians weaving their way through the blocked traffic is a regular scene at Kelkar road in Dombivli (east) closer to the railway station, finds SHRIKANT KHUPERKAR.

At Kelkar Road, there used to be a transformer and now the same is being upgraded to a distribution point (DP) which is a welcome change but the way this operations is being handled is really questionable and causing massive disruption of traffic flow specially near the crowded station area which houses a busy rickshaw stand and also a spot where buses pass from.

Mandar Halbe, Corporator, MNS said, “KDMC has not made payment to the electrical contractor handling this work and also the bills for the related road construction contractor are due. It is shameful to see that KDMC is not able to make payment for such small work also.”Satej Jadhav, Senior Inspector of Dombivli Traffic Department said, “I have sent letter to KDMC informing them of the traffic congestion caused in morning and evening hours due to this incomplete work pending from over three months now, but there is negligible response.”

Uttamrao Sopan Undre – BEST Electrcial contractor for this project said, “I completed this work as per tender and submitted the bill in November 2018, but till date my payment has not been made. I have contacted the KDMC office several times but there is no answer for the payment. A total of Rs 38 lakhs of payment is pending.”

When contact Harshal Shah, Civil Contractor on phone, all he said was, “My work is completed, please speak with the KDMC authorities only.

Santosh Surve a regular commuter said, “If this work is not completed before the rains then it will be even more dangerous for the motorists, the autoriksha and pedestrians and can become fatal also with the water logged pits unidentifiable in rains. Since this is elections season none of the parties are paying attention to this issue and there is no one from the traffic department also at this spot. Each morning I park my two wheeler near station and the return path is always congested and being a one way there is no other option to reach Manpada road.”

Pooja Patil, another regular commuter from Lodha said, “Our bus’ starting point is from under the skywalk, we see the bus coming from a distance but it takes too much time to actually reach the stop because of the traffic congestion caused here. In absence of any traffic police even the auto drivers fuel the traffic jam to make a quick buck seeing that the bus is stuck in traffic. We have to pay Rs 25 per seat and also wait till the auto gets a fourth seat. The KDMC bus fare for same route is only Rs 10 but due to this construction now the bus is unable to come to the spot. This work should complete soon or our troubles will not end.”

Sunil Joshi, Deputy Commissioner Encroachment (prevention) department of KDMC said, “Per our records the work is improperly done by MSEB and hence we are unable to proceed to construct the concrete road as the HT cable is not laid properly. If we proceed now then in future it will again create problems if any maintenance would be needed. Electrical contractor is demanding extra money to complete this work and KDMC is willing to pay the same under MSEB supervision but the contractor is not responding to the plan.”

Bhagwat Patil, junior electrical engineer of KDMC said, “Most of the work is complete and the remainder of work we shall carry out parallel to the concretization of the road.”

Harshal Mhatre, Assistant Engineer of MSEB said, “Our work is supervision and it is complete, next stage is the laying the concrete road which is pending from KDMC.”

The blame game clearly shows the fallout and complete lack of communication and coordination between KDMC and MSEB and its contractors. All the while it is the tax paying citizens who have to suffer and the traffic department who has to control the congestion which is sure to happen every single day.

With such a small activity taking so much time, what would be the situation if a major activity needs to be taken up and is the city incapable of handling such tasks too?, ask residents.

I have sent letter to KDMC informing them of the traffic congestion caused in morning and evening hours due to this incomplete work pending from over three months now, but there is negligible response.
— Satej Jadhav, Senior Inspector of Dombivli Traffic Department. 

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