Motorists in the south of the city continue to negotiate through the most congested of roads, a year-and-a-half after the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) proposed to take up large scale road-widening work here.

Authorities had identified about 40 road stretches, to be developed at a cost of Rs. 250 crore, the work was to be complete by the end of 2012.

A meeting in May last, called by Mayor Majid Hussain, and attended by all seven MLAs representing Old City as well as GHMC officials, had decided to take up the works on a war-footing and assured full co-operation.

As the current year inches towards its end, there is still no sign of the works being completed. In fact, the authorities have not even issued notices to many property owners due to various reasons. The GHMC preferred to acquire properties after taking the consent of the property owners, instead of the land acquisition route to avoid legal tangles.

Officials admit that works are progressing at a snail’s pace. Of the 40 road stretches identified for widening, only a few major thoroughfares have been completed while work is yet to begin on the interior roads. The work is also plagued with legal issues, religious structures coming in the way and property owners insisting on re-evaluations. Shortage of manpower is another major hindrance, it is said.

For example, road-widening works on the Chanchalguda junction to Madannapet got delayed after a few property owners moved court. Work on the Chandrayangutta-Errakunta stretch is not complete as CRPF authorities have not handed over their property. Similarly, at Bahadurpura junction, three more properties await demolition.

Meanwhile, officials have issued notices to property owners at Fatehdarwaza – Volga hotel stretch (92 properties), Morning Star – Rein Bazaar Chaman (30), Rakshapuram to Edi Bazaar (330), Gowlipura road (163), Med’s Hospital – Petla Burj (49) to name a few most congested stretches. The consent of the land owners is awaited.

However, GHMC South Zone Commissioner N. Ravi Kiran is confident of speeding up the works in the next few months.

“The works were delayed due to festivals and other priorities but certainly there will be progress on this front in the next few months,” he claims.

Mayor’s assurance

Hyderabad Mayor Majid Hussain has assured of the completion of the work in the next few months. Road-widening works on major thoroughfares of the Old City like Midhani, Saidabad and Keshavgiri, which were delayed for many years, were completed in the last one year.

On the interior stretches, Mr. Hussain said the GHMC was in negotiations with property owners on compensation.

“Road widening in Old City is top priority. In every standing committee meeting, we have been approving road-widening works and the related compensation packages. We are confident of completing the works soon and there is full cooperation from the public representatives,” the Mayor said.

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