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No city for walkers

 Footpaths—a perilous path for pedestrians

By Vivek Dubey

Bengaluru, September 8, 2016: At least four people have fallen through gaps in the footpath near Esteem Mall at Kempapur in the last two weeks. The number of pedestrians being killed on the roads of the city has also gone up.

People tend to walk on roads because the footpaths are bad, and this has led to a rise in pedestrian deaths in the city. City Police records show that 714 of the 4828 persons killed in accidents in 2015 were pedestrians. In 2016, upto July, the numbers were 453 and 2942, respectively.

Pradeep Singh, a resident of Jayanagar said that he sprained his leg after falling in one of the many gaps in footpath while traveling to his shop.
Another person, Rameshwar, a resident of Madiwala said that one night he fell in one of the gaps while going to the market.

The condition of the footpaths around Madiwala, Richmond Circle, Kormangala and Malleshwaram are far from satisfactory. These footpaths have huge gaps in them, some up to two meters wide, where people keep falling and getting injured.

K. Liyakath, BBMP Town Planner says they have been closing the gaps but some people have been stealing the concrete slabs used to cover the footpaths. He added that the footpaths are in a bad condition because of sewage maintenance in some places. He said that they have already started fixing these footpaths.

Another outcome of unsafe footpaths is that people walk on the roads and are booked for jaywalking.

Anil Kumar Purohit, Traffic Police Inspector said a large number of people have been jaywalking. He said about 14-15 people are presented to court on a daily basis and they are fined accordingly.

Aahana Dhar, Manager, SaveLIFE Foundation that works for road safety across India said that the BBMP needs to widen footpaths instead of roads. She also said that using tiles instead of concrete slabs could fix the problem of the slabs being stolen.


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