Citizens say that the delay in the construction of a retention wall on Mysuru Road is making their commute fraught with danger.
Bengaluru: More than a year after its collapse, the Vrishabhavathi Canal retention wall on Mysuru Road has not been repaired completely by the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP). Since the construction work is going on, one km of the state highway has been turned into a one-way road, making the area susceptible to accidents.
Even that part gets filled with knee-deep water after heavy rain. Vehicles then have to divert or have to go back. This causes a lot of confusion. B.S. Prahlad, chief engineer of the road infrastructure of BBMP said, “The work is being delayed because of heavy rain. The work was disrupted for a long time due to Covid.”
A Rs. 1,300 crore plan was made in 2018 to build a stormwater network across the city to tackle the flooding issue. Prahlad said, “It costs around Rs five crore to construct one km of retaining wall.” A total of 842 km of stormwater drain network was to be built in three years. The retaining wall on Vrishabhavathi was built in one and a half years before it washed away due to heavy rain on June 25, 2020.
Shreyash Jogin, a student of R.V. Engineering College on Mysuru Road said, “It gets really difficult to drive at night because of the one-way diversion. The road gets flooded when it rains and often the traffic is diverted and I have to take a much longer route home.”
The retention wall crumbled because of poor construction and the hydro pressure of the Vrishabhavathi Canal say, experts. Somnath Basudhkar, Associate professor of the civil department of R.V. engineering college said, “The wall was not constructed properly. It was half-constructed. This is not the first time that the Vrishabhavathi River has flooded the roads. The entire area was flooded in 2017. After that, the stormwater-drain network project was proposed.”
After the crumbling of the wall, BBMP promised to conduct a thorough investigation and reconstruct the wall as soon as possible. B.S. Prahlad said, “The deadline has been extended to December 31, 2021. The work is in progress and more than 50 percent of the work is completed.”
The area has been barricaded but no worker can be seen in the area. The road has been dug. Sagar Sharma, a resident of the area said, “The work has been halted for a few months now. The road is always flooded due to rain.”