BENGALURU: After repeatedly facing apathy from civic agencies, residents of Defence Colony in Indiranagar have taken it upon themselves to tackle the rising instances of dengue in the colony.
Several roads in the upscale colony were dug up for a Bangalore Water Supply and Sewage Board (BWSSB) project in December last year. After completion of the project, BWSSB officials told residents that it was the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike’s (BBMP) job to asphalt the roads again. The BBMP, in turn, did not start work in time and later cited the poll code. As a result, about 11 roads, running a total length of 5-6 km that have essentially become dirt tracks, are left in the same state.
Apart from making it tough for residents to use the roads, the drains by their sides are clogged with mud. The stagnant water in the drains has thus become a breeding ground for mosquitoes, said Vidya Chandy, a resident of the colony. In addition, residents allege the shoddy work by BWSSB has caused many water pipes to break.
“There have been many cases of dengue in the colony over the past few years. So, we undertook a colony-wise survey to find out how many people are affected. We have also arranged for fogging to control mosquito breeding and have approached an organisation to come up with proposals to counter the spread of the disease,” Vidya said.
A total of 146 plots were surveyed out of 212 plots identified (69%). A total of 159 cases were reported in 183 families in the past five years, with 48% of families recording at least one case. About 26% of the water supply pipes were also found to be broken in the colony though they had been installed as recently as December.
After failing to get any response from officials, resident Rohini Shah could not tolerate the drain clogged with slush and mud in front of her home which was attracting mosquitoes, and got it cleared at her own expense. “I had asked BBMP workers to clean it many times, but to no avail. I have already contracted dengue once and do not want to take any chances,” she said.
Another resident, Naresh Malhotra, said the smell of sewage pervades at many places now. “Door-to-door garbage collection is also not done in what is supposed to be a posh area. When we asked the workers, we found that they had not been paid for six months,” he added.
A staffer at the office of councillor of the Hoysala Nagar ward, Anand Kumar, said works on asphalting the road will be taken up by BBMP as soon as the model code of conduct lapses on May 28. However, the code of conduct has already lapsed in all constituencies expect Jayanagar and Rajarajeshwari Nagar.