It’s 2018, but the narrative of government apathy leaving ordinary citizens to fend for themselves remains alive and kicking. Once again, citizens have stepped up to finish the work that government authorities should have done a long while ago.
On Sunday, 200 residents of Sus village and eight commuters from nearby areas repaired approximately 100 potholes along a 5 km stretch of Pashan-Sus Road running between the Pashan and Nande villages in Maharashtra. These commuters raised money for the repair work via crowdfunding, reports Pune Mirror.
Reconstruction on this once pot-holed riddled road was supposed to be undertaken nearly five years ago by the state public works department. Unfortunately, nothing was done because the Pune Metropolitan Region Development Authority (PMRDA) and the Sus gram panchayat entered into a dispute over jurisdiction.
While both sets of agencies continued to battle over turf, the residents of the Sus village and nearby areas who used this road were compelled to navigate a bumpy and pot-holed thoroughfare for five years. Despite all their pleas to PMRDA, nothing was done.
“It’s an extremely busy and congested road. As the Symbiosis campus is located along the road, it would get repaired every time a VIP came calling. However, the quick fixes did not last long, and the road was back to being potholed. The move by the villagers is remarkable, especially in light of the government’s failure,” a resident of the Pashan, told Pune Mirror.
“We are proud of ourselves, having completed the work and helped so many people using the road. There were rampant accidents on this road, and we needed to do something to stop that. Government interventions did not help, and the quality of the road they built saw it crumbling every time it rained. The material used by us will at least ensure that the road remains intact for a year or two,” said Madhura Jadhav, a resident of Sus, to Pune Mirror.
Even the PMRDA, which should have ideally done more than just sitting on its behind, praised the work of the villagers and encouraged further such acts of citizen intervention.
(Edited by Gayatri Mishra)