While BBMP officials were busy fixing the sinkhole, a similar road caving in was reported near National Public School in Kengeri Satellite town. The damage that happened on Sunday was also reportedly due to water seepage.
The Kundalahalli underpass
A service road built as part of a Rs 19.5-crore underpass in Bengaluru caved in on Sunday. This happens just four months after the inauguration and this is now giving new grounds to the Congress to allege corruption in the BJP’s Karnataka government.
As per reports on NDTV, the repair was already underway at the Kundalahalli underpass that connects the eastern suburbs to other parts of the city. An Executive Engineer working on the civic body’s Signal Free Corridor project, of which this road is a part, said “The cave-in happened because a pipe under it broke and water seeped in over the last few days. That’s why the soil was loose.”
The pipeline has been fixed by the Bengaluru Water Supply and Sewerage Board, which is responsible for underground utilities. The breakdown impacted the Cauvery river water supply in some areas for up to 24 hours, said reports.
The BBMP fixed the damaged road on Monday and restored regular traffic. Nevertheless, the civic body drew flak from netizens for its shoddy work on the structure unveiled less than three months ago.
While Palike officials were busy fixing the sinkhole, a similar road caving in was reported near National Public School in Kengeri Satellite town. The damage that happened on Sunday was also reportedly due to water seepage, reported Deccan Herald.
The civic body wasted no time in laying the blame on the BWSSB’s doorstep, saying it did a poor job in shifting the pipeline. “We are not levying any penalty on the BWSSB because the contractor, who shifted the pipeline, had also built the underpass. The BBMP will not be spending any extra funds and the repair work is being taken up by the contractor at his own expense,” the civic body said.
“40 percent” corruption
Congress leader Nagaraj Yadav stated this is yet another instance of “40 percent” corruption, a reference to alleged cuts taken by the government in contracts. The government has dismissed such charges as a baseless political drama.
According to reports, the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) spent Rs 19.5 crore on building the 281-meter-long underpass, comprising a 7.5-meter-wide service road on both sides.
Nagaraj Yadav, also a member of the Legislative Council, demanded that a criminal case be filed against the contractors and government officials. “There’s a reason why we have been demanding a dedicated minister for the city. Chief Minister (Basavaraj Bommai) is himself the Bengaluru minister in charge and has failed to keep up with his responsibilities.”
Meanwhile, he also questioned the contractors’ association: “Where is the quality of work? And then they will say we cannot do quality work because of corruption.” The contractors have not yet responded.