Video Editor: Mohd Irshad Alam
Video Producer: Aastha Gulati
In September 2020, a motorcycle-borne engineer was driving through a 1.5 km stretch that connects Faridabad’s Hardware Chowk and Pyali Chowk. The road has been riddled with potholes for over three years now, and it was the 29-year-old’s misfortune to have lost balance on his bike and consequently, lose his life in an accident. This begs the question, who is to blame?
In the NIT area of the city, thousands of commuters cross this road to get to Gurugram. Several residential colonies are located adjacent to the road. Travel time on the road should ideally be around 2 minutes, but instead, one gets a free 5-minute-long rollercoaster ride.
Despite protests over the years and even loss of life, civic bodies are not willing to lay it anew or make sure it is travel-friendly.
On 6 February, I took the bumpy ride myself. I am a resident of Faridabad and well aware of the dangers this road posits.
People whom I spoke with also said that despite complaints made to Municipal Corporation Faridabad (MCF), the road continues to be in a pitiable state. The corporation has only made false promises.
Even if potholes are filled, it is done temporarily and their state is back to what it used to be in a matter of few days. The situation is worse during the monsoon and winter months, when there is fog.
“Cars can hit (bikes) anytime here. It is a task to save oneself. Sometimes, there is an imbalance (on the bike). I have almost slipped a couple of times and got hurt. My father was hurt as well... a car hit him while he was on the cycle. It took Rs 1-1.5 lakh for his treatment.”Pradeep Kumar, Resident of Jawahar Colony
In 2018, an NGO had staged a 15-day protest to demand reconstruction. The most recent demonstration was on 7 February 2021, but the MCF is still unmoved. Residents here are tired of authorities passing the buck.
“There is an order to lay the road again, but it has not been done still, as sometimes authorities say it’s under Ballabgarh jurisdiction, while others say another team will do it. The state of the road is so bad... even the roads in my village are better than this.”Jitendra, Resident of Jawahar Colony
Be it a two-wheeler or four, travellers are increasingly inconvenienced and demand urgent repairs for smooth travel.
“The road is repaired only when a minister has to cross, otherwise, no one cares. You can see how dangerous and accident-prone the road is. We are facing a lot of problems.”Mohammad Rafeeq, Resident of Jawahar Colony
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