‘New Road in Maha’s Dhule After 15 Yrs, Cracks Visible Already’   

When questioned by residents, corporation officials said construction was started without their permission.

Published
My Report
4 min read

Video Editor: Deepthi Ramdas
Video Producer: Saradha Natarajan

Dhule has a strategic advantage when it comes to Maharashtra's infrastructure, as it is a junction of 3 National Highways. Within the city, however, low-grade construction of a 100 ft road has angered locals, who have been protesting for the last three months.

We have called this a fight for their ‘right to life’.

“It has been only 20 days since the road was constructed, but it has already developed a lot of cracks and gaps.” 
Ansari Abdul Hafeez, Social Activist

The construction of the much-awaited road began at Millat Nagar on 6 August. We saw that the road was laid in a very bad condition and requested the engineer-in-charge to show the tenure and estimation records for the road on the same day.

The estimation stated the entire 100 feet road construction would cost about Rs 1.34 crores. When we accessed the Bill of Quantities statement, it mentioned that the entire road should be built with concrete cement of 10-inch height.

Cracked roads as of 3 November.
Cracked roads as of 3 November.
(Photo Courtesy:  Ansari Hamza Javeed)

We had filed an RTI to get the information on the estimation and Bill of Quantities developed for the construction of this road.

RTI filed by Locals on 10 September.
RTI filed by Locals on 10 September.
(Photo Courtesy:  Ansari Hamza Javeed)

Poor Quality of Construction

The road should be made with four inches of concrete cement and six inches of cement as a top layer. However, they had constructed the road with only two inches of concrete cement and four inches of cement as the top layer. We immediately started the protest on 7 August, asking the district corporation officials to look into the issue and construct proper roads.

When the residents questioned the officials, they stated that the process of construction was started without their permission. The officials immediately stopped the construction of the road after the protest.

Then, 21 days later, the construction was resumed from the other end of the road.

From the protest on 7 August.
From the protest on 7 August.
(Photo Courtesy:  Ansari Hamza Javeed)
“Even after the protest, the base was not laid for 4 inches of concrete cement, it is 3 inches somewhere and 2 inches somewhere. By calculating the raw materials they are using, it looks like only 12 tons of cement will be used to construct a 100 feet road that is eight metre wide.”
Ansari Ataur Rahman, Journalist

The raw materials they are using are of really low quality compared to the work order. We suspect that there is corruption in the usage of raw materials.

“When we see the Bill of Quantities, it mentions that the M30 grade cement should be used for construction but they are using M10 grade.”
Ansari Ataur Rahman, Journalist 

As a Civil Engineer, I can easily find out what grade of cement is being used when they are in the process of mixing the concrete for the construction. The road is neither durable nor will it sustain for long. The entire road will be damaged after moderate rainfall.

Grievances Unanswered

After writing numerous letters to the Local Ayukt office and addressing the district collector, no response had been given. All the letters went unanswered and no action has been taken against the poor construction of the road against any officials.

 Letter written to Dhule Corporation officials.
Letter written to Dhule Corporation officials.
(Photo Courtesy:  Ansari Hamza Javeed)

Disruption to the Residents

From the time they started the construction, it has been very filthy here. People have started using the road but we are not able to bring in heavy-duty vehicles, as the road is unconstructed in some parts. It is creating a lot of menace for daily users as the garbage is piled up on the side of the road.

‘New Road in Maha’s Dhule After 15 Yrs, Cracks Visible Already’   
(Photo Courtesy:  Ansari Hamza Javeed)

We are concerned about the safety of the people living here. The roads are in a poor state even before it is being extensively used. What will happen to the condition of the road when the traffic rises? We have waited for 15 years for this road to be built. If they are building a poor quality road now, and this gets damaged, we have to wait for another 15 years to get a new road.

There is a girl’s school near the work site. The life of many students, residents, and pedestrians are in danger.

We, the residents of Dhule, appeal the Maharashtra government to conduct an enquiry soon and look into the issue immediately.

Aayukt Office’s Response to The Quint

When The Quint tried to get the officials’ word, Corporation Engineer Kailash Shinde stated that the officials in-charge are carrying out a meeting with the district collector.

“The residents had given a detailed letter of all their issues. We have been conducting meetings regarding the same with the collector’s office and in a day or two’s time, we will be releasing a letter stating the forward plan.” 

Corporation Officer, Pawthe Rao, told The Quint that the base layer of the road is only made with M10 grade cement and the top layer will be made with M30 cement. He also stated that the locals had submitted their queries in form of letters, and they will soon be answered.

The officials were reluctant to answer questions asked based on the allegations of corruption.

(All ‘My Report' branded stories are submitted by citizen journalists to The Quint. Though The Quint inquires into the claims/allegations from all parties before publishing, the report and the views expressed above are the citizen journalist's own. The Quint neither endorses, nor is responsible for the same.)

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