It continues to pour heavily in the monsoons. What keeps making a debut though, is the sight of muck and water-filled, camouflaged potholes in most nooks and corners of streets — highways and freeways included. While the rest of the world continues to lament the inconvenience caused by potholes on social media, there are a few who go out there and fill those potholes.
One of these ‘pothole-filling heroes’ on the streets of Hyderabad is 12-year-old Ravi Teja.
The year 2015 recorded 10,727 deaths due to crashes caused by potholes, speed breakers and damaged roads, according to a Times of India report. The number of deaths due to potholes rose to 3,416 in 2015, from 3,039 in the previous year, according to the report. The driving force behind Ravi’s initiative is rooted in this.
Hailing from Habsiguda in Hyderabad, Ravi bore witness to a family of three on a motorcycle fall on one such road while avoiding a pothole and succumbing to head injuries. This made the son of construction worker D Suryanarayana and homemaker Nagamani take up the task of repairing the road himself rather than depending on civic authorities in Telangana.
“After watching the accident on the Habsiguda road, I thought I should do something from my side to see that such accidents do not recur,” Ravi told the Hindustan Times. “I have been doing it for the last one week, whenever I get the time.”
Ravi started collecting broken bricks, gravel and stones from areas in the vicinity and filling potholes with them. Fighting dust and pollution, Ravi would work hard for hours to fill the potholes.
His actions as a Class 6 student from a local government school caught the attention of local residents, who praised his civic sense and responsibility.
Answering the question of who came up with this solution, he said, “Nobody told me to do so. I did it on my own. And, I will continue to do it.”
Ravi was deeply affected by the death of an 6-month old toddler, who fell into an open borewell at Chevella in Ranga Reddy district a few days ago, reported ANI.
“Such mishaps should not happen. I will do by bit to avoid such accidents,” he said. “I will also ask my friends to join me in filling up the potholes.”
According to an Indian Express Report, Telangana chief minister K Chandrashekar Rao directed officials of the department of roads and buildings to ensure all potholes in Telangana are filled by the end of the month at a review meeting on May 1. He declared that necessary funds would be released from the budget and warned spotting any potholes on any of the roads, would result in stringent action against officials.
We only hope the situation of the roads in Telangana improve under the civic authorities or more changemakers like young Ravi team up to put an end to dangerous potholes.
More power to him!
Feature image credit: ANI YouTube