VISAKHAPATNAM: Many children from Burujupeta, Rangireeju Veedhi and other areas in the Old City did not fly kites from their terrace this Sankranti. The reason: their parents didn’t allow them as the live wires were so low they threatened to touch their heads.
“Not this Sankranti, we ask our children to go to a municipal stadium or the beach to fly kites. We do not even dare to dry our clothes even unconsciously,” said M Lata, a housewife from Burujupeta area.
Sagging wires hang like cobwebs from the electricity poles in most of the areas in the One Town. The residents say that they have been habituated to live among the wires after getting vexed waiting for a response from the officials concerned to the complaints.
Most of the Burujupeta residents reside in one-storey houses and the bylanes are congested. A number of electricity poles are just metres away from the first-floor balcony of the houses, scaring the residents. There are a number of schools, temples and some public places where people gather but they all face the threat from live wires.
“We have complained about the issue a number of times. The officials have promised a number of times that the poles would be replaced. But it didn’t happen,” said Lata, a Burujupeta resident.
P Madhava Rao, a private employee in the next lane, said: “The problem aggravates when it rains. We are very scared as some wires fall to the ground after they get snapped from the pole. We do not know whether the wire is live or not. Motorists at high-speed face threat when they come in contact with the wire,” he said.
The residents also complain about the uncovered transformers, which is common in the One Town. Consider the case at Sri Anjaneya Swamy Temple near Turner’s Chowltry, where a transformer remains open. The devotees coming to the temple are on alert when they remove footwear to enter the temple.
“This is the main road and we can imagine the situation. The wires hang just above the heads of people walking on the footpath,” said R Sai Ram, a resident of Poorna Market who frequently visits the temple. “A number of children play cricket on roads here. Sometimes the cricket ball hits the wires of the transformer. In some cases, the ball gets stuck inside.
These kids throw stones to get the ball back. This is how kids play here,” said Venu Madhav, a B.Tech student of the Chowltry area. He said that a number of times the locals have requested the electricity officials to fix the transformers at a good height. Sadly, there was no response.
On the sanitation front, the locals complain that though garbage is cleared every morning, the bins are seen overflowing by afternoon. A number of road curves are dotted with garbage mounds, inviting stray dogs. A similar situation prevails at many schools and temples. A GVMC official said that they have been in talks with EPDCL over the sagging wires. He also said that more dump bins would be provided if required.