Shimla-Tutikandi-Dhalli bypass road in tatters again, potholes, dust trouble public
Shimla: After a very short spell of relief, the Shimla-Tutikandi-Dhalli bypass road is again in tatters. Enormous potholes cover the road like landmines and rides have become quite bumpy. The poor quality tarring job is self-evident from the fact that loose gravel is spread all over the road. The tar couldn’t hold it more than a few months.
The potholes and gravel have made the road risky, especially for two- wheelers. The diameter of potholes is increasing due to erosion. When the road gets dry on a sunny day, the ride becomes highly dusty. The dust hits not only others driving on the road but also the people standing at bus stops.
Drivers try to avoid potholes, which is sufficient to lead to fatal road accidents.
The bypass crossing near Tutikandi is worst hit. The bus stoppage is one of the busiest in Shimla city. A big chunk of the road had caved in in April due to the cutting of the hill for construction of the new parking complex here.
The road was opened within few hours with a temporary arrangement. Sadly, no one attended the spot thereafter. The traffic cops and passengers on this stop are exposed to heavy dust emissions. It is a choking point now, causing regular traffic troubles.
Sometimes, the policemen ask laborers to throw some water on the road to prevent dust arising from the road. It helps temporarily,
said a woman waiting for her bus at the stoppage.
It is a torture for me to stand here. My clothes and bag get covered in dust within minutes. Everytime a bus or heavy vehicles passes by, people at the stoppage are left in clouds of dust,
said a local who uses the stoppage daily.
Clearly, the administration is not taking the health implications of increased emission of dust particles seriously.
Occasionally, labor appears to fill these potholes with sand. Occasional patching work is also undertaken. However, the patchwork is equally poor and hardly withstands even a few months.
There is no improvement in the attitude of the private contractors towards the quality of work in tarring of roads.
For the public, it is not a surprise that these contractors easily obtain clean chit despite poor quality work. As per provisions, the administration is supposed to assess some defined parameters before giving it a clean chit.
Irrespective of the ruling political parties, the nexus between government departments and private contractors has always weighed heavy on public interests. For instance, the bypass road will have to wait for tarring as monsoon will be followed by winters, which is not favorable for this job. At least, this what the administration says if complaints are made to it regarding maintenance of roads.