What has added to the commuters’ nightmare is motion of extra heavy autos, reminiscent of water tankers, following the closure of NIBM annexe street, in addition to rushing by two and four-wheelers even on the steep slopes and on the blind turns and “lack of policing”.
The scooterist died, whereas the pillion rider and two others in an autorickshaw have been injured after the van rolled down the NIBM street slope round Sunday night, hitting at the very least six autos earlier than coming to a halt.
“Since the NIBM annexe road was closed for traffic near the Cloud Nine area to fix the slope there, the number of vehicles doubled on NIBM-Undri road. The road was already in a bad condition and the additional load of vehicles made it worse. We have been wondering why the civic body was not repairing the NIBM-Undri road, particularly on the slope between Clover Hills and Palace Orchard housing societies. They have started the repair work a few days ago, but only in patches,” stated Aftab Sheikh, a neighborhood businessman.
Native residents stated their demand for secure commuting alongside the street was fundamental. Alka Kapoor, a senior member of the NIBM Highway Residents’ Discussion board, stated, “We want the road condition to be fine. As the NIBM Annexe Road is closed, the number of vehices on NIBM-Undri road has increased. We have been demanding the road be made free of potholes, but nothing happens. We are tired of visiting the civic body;s ward office with our concerns.”
“I was attending to some customers when the accident occurred. Hearing the loud crash everyone rushed to the spot. It was a horror to see so many people injured and vehicles damaged. I am running my shop for 18 years and have witnessed minor accidents almost on a daily basis due to the slope,” stated Prakash Choudhuri, a grocer.
“This 200-300m stretch in front of Palace Orchid Housing Society is a major challenge for any person. There is a steep slope that comes just after a sharp turn, leading up to a slightly broader Y junction. The stretch from the slope to the Y junction becomes a bottleneck,” stated Pradeep Mohan, a neighborhood resident.
DCP (visitors) Vijaykumar Magar stated he has instructed the Kondhwa visitors police and Pune Municipal Company to collectively examine the spot and rectify the technical defects. “There are no speed-breakers on NIBM-Undri road. The traffic mess and accidents will reduce on NIBM-Undri road and at NIBM, Undri and Khadi Machine chowks if the PMC expedites the Katraj-Kondhwa bypass widening work,” he informed TOI.
Final yr, the police had banned heavy autos alongside components of NIBM Highway. However the ban was lifted ever for the reason that NIBM annexe street was shut.
V G Kulkarni, head of the PMC’s street division, stated, “We have assessed the situation and have proposed widening the road and lowering the slope. Once the proposal is final, it will be submitted to the forest department. The work can be done only after we get the forest department’s approval.”