Commuters use underconstruction bridge over nullah

October 7, 2013

Niraj Chinchkhede, TNN

AURANGABAD: With blatant disregard to safety – and civic discipline – commuters have started using an under-construction bridge over a nullah on the crucial road between Shahnoormiyan Dargah and Peer Bazaar Road in the city, just a month after the Aurangabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) laid a concrete slab over the stretch.Traffic movement has started on the bridge even before the civic body could put a layer of asphalt on the stretch and set up the bridge’s railings. The AMC had initiated the bridge’s work in March 2013 at an investment of Rs 56 lakh and had promised to complete the project within six months. Civic authorities are now saying that it will take 40-50 days to complete the work.An AMC engineer supervising the bridge’s construction said that the route was blocked off, but locals broke the barricades and started using the bridge, impatient at the delay. He said that the AMC has not yet completed work on the stretch. “We are yet to lay asphalt on the road. Moreover, work of the drainage line, streetlights and pavement are also pending. The civic body has not officially opened the road for traffic,” he said.The Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) and the Indian Railways are jointly building a railway overbridge about 500 meters from the bridge on Shahnoormiyan Dargah-Peer Bazaar Road. Work of the ROB, which was supposed to be completed by September 2013, is still going on, adding to the commuting woes of locals.

Local corporator Girijaram Halnor justified the traffic flow, stating that the closed route was causing “serious inconvenience” to citizens. “This is one of the busiest roads in the area that connects two markets. Because of the ongoing construction of the Sangram Nagar railway bridge, the traffic burden on the Shahnoormiyan Dargah-Peer Bazaar Road has increased. We cannot block the road for long,” Halnor told TOI on Sunday.

Halnor argued that the flow of traffic would “settle down the soil layer” on the newly-constructed bridge. “The festive season has already begun and the number of commuters on the road has gone up. We cannot restrict commuters during this season,” Halnor said.

Aurangabad assistant commissioner of police (traffic) S B Chaugule said that it was the AMC’s responsibility to block traffic movement on the under-construction bridge.

“The municipal body has not informed that traffic police department about the completion of the bridge. Thus, it is not supposed to let commuters use it. During the construction period, the municipal authorities should see that the road is being blocked,” Chaugule said.

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