BANGALORE: On Friday, policemen were busy trying to fill potholes on a 3.4-km stretch on Mysore Road, from Gali Anjaneya Temple to Gopalan Arcade, as Governor Vala was heading for Mysore.
But for ordinary people, commuting on this road is a life-and-death gamble every day. It is dotted with potholes, and the Metro rail project and the rainwater ditches add to their problems.
Express went on a reality check and found the stretch, ending at Rajarajeshwarinagar, treacherous. The road connects central Bangalore to areas such as Vijayanagar, Chandra Layout, Rajarajeshwarinagar, Kengeri and Nayandahalli. Express found at least eight danger spots for commuters, especially two-wheeler riders.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and his ministers have been talking about making roads safer, and it is ironic that the road that connects the state capital to his hometown is in a pathetic state.
Across from the Renault showroom, a big crater, at least a full foot deep, lies on the middle of the road. Another threat is a manhole, partially open. Near Gopalan Arcade, the traffic police were seen directing workers to fill the bigger craters as Vala was travelling to Mysore on Friday. “We are busy not booking any traffic violation cases, but filling the potholes and craters. The governor is taking this route, and we need to ensure a smooth drive,” said a policeman attached to Byatarayanapura traffic station.
The police got two tractors filled with cement debris to temporarily fix the problem. Asphalting and repairing the road is the responsibility of the civic agencies.
Just after the Rajarajeshwarinagar arch, a huge crater lies in front of the BWSSB quarters. Someone has placed stone slabs on the crater to help motorists spot it. But this is potentially dangerous, especially at night and when it is raining, as the stones are not visible from a distance. For two-wheeler riders, the risks are huge: if they fall at night, they run the risk of being run over by the heavy vehicles plying on the stretch.
At Pantarapalya, where some buildings were demolished for road widening, the road turns slushy, and two-wheelers risk skidding. Traffic is slow here all the time.
At the Nayandahalli junction, a part of the stormwater drain is open, and water enters the road, making life miserable for motorists. There is a huge crater here, too.
A median near the Metro station has not been removed even after the road was widened. With no asphalting, this has become another messy spot.