GUWAHATI, April 24 - It is the road that leads to the headquarters of the ruling party Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and is used by some who�s who of the State every day. And it is this road that the Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) has chosen to display its utter laxity.
Workers of the GMC and other agencies that undertook a drain-cleaning exercise on the Hengerabari Road, dumped the debris on the footpath, rendering most stretches unusable by pedestrians. Intermittent rains have compounded the problem, giving rise to accident risks.
Reportedly, the portions of the drain along the Hengerabari Road were manually cleaned a few days back.
�Instead of collecting the debris and taking it away, the workers dumped it over the footpaths. The entire purpose of the work has been defeated. In no time, most of the mud, silt and garbage taken out of the drains leaked down to the drains again following intermittent showers. Unnecessarily, the GMC wasted public money by undertaking the drive,� Manoj Jha, a small trader who owns a shop on the road and has been observing the activities, said.
�Wonder why the workers can�t take away the debris as and when they are dug out from the drains..,� he added.
Pedestrians are unable to use most stretches of the footpath and are forced to take the main road.
�During rains, the portions where the debris is dumped become slippery and muddy. It is impossible to walk on those portions. One is forced to walk on the road, which has raised risks of accidents. Students and children are the worst sufferers,� Amit Das, another local complained.
Chaotic traffic has become a regular feature on the Hengerabari Road, thanks to the unruly metro share taxis, e-rickshaws and haphazard parking of vehicles. Locals say there is absolutely no regulatory mechanism to control and regulate the traffic. �In such a situation, if people cannot use the footpath, you can imagine their plight. It is a shame that this is happening in a place which is just stone�s throw away from the seat of power Dispur,� Mrigen Baishya, a senior citizen of the area said.
Some stretches where the debris has been dumped, have the semblance of a garbage dumping site.
Similar complaints of dumping of debris on the footpath by GMC workers have been pouring in from other city areas like Pub Sarumataria. Road renovation and footpath construction in Pub Sarumataria�s Gokul Path area, which was a long standing demand of the locals, was only started in March on the eve of the rainy season. This led to a chaotic situation, with slush and mud everywhere. There is apprehension among the locals that the municipal water lines in the area may have got snapped due to use of excavators and other heavy equipment, because the flow of water to households has decreased substantially in the last few days causing severe inconvenience to residents.
The Kamrup Metro Deputy Commissioner had a few days back issued an order for clearing the city drains by April 30 next. If the agencies concerned intend to apply a similar modus operandi, there is unlikely to be any benefit from the exercise.