Illegal digging of roads punishable, says official
‘Companies which cut roads should also restore them’
Road-cutting banned between June and November
MANGALORE: The Mangalore City Corporation is contemplating on a new plan to restore parts of roads dug up for various purposes in its limits. It may appoint an agency exclusively to restore such portions.
According to K. Naveenchandra, chairman, standing committee for town planning and improvement, the corporation is planning to invite tenders and select the agency. At present, people have to deposit a prescribed fee for digging up the road for any purpose. The accumulation of this fee will be used to fund the contract agency that will be assigned with the restoration of dug up portions of various roads. The corporation is yet to take a final decision in this regard. Mr. Naveenchandra said that although the engineering section of the corporation was expected to restore the dug up parts of roads, it was not happening properly.
G.V. Rajashekar, executive engineer of the corporation, said that those who want to dig up the roads had to file an application to the corporation mentioning the spots. The officials of engineering section would inspect the spots and decide if permission could be granted based on the condition of the road. They prescribe the fee depending on the length of the digging proposed by the applicant. The fee varies according to the type of road, mud or asphalted, sought to be dug. Companies or persons can dig up roads only after remitting the fee to the corporation.
Industries, companies, hotels and other establishments have to restore the road without waiting for the corporation to asphalt the stretch. In case of residential areas, house-owners have to restore it first temporarily and the corporation will asphalt the stretch subsequently.
To a query, the executive engineer said that the corporation could impose a penalty for illegal digging and also file a criminal complaint against the offenders.
He said that recently a private telecom company dug up the road near Hotel Gold Finch without corporation’s permission. The corporation filed a police complaint on the company after which the latter approached the corporation. “It was fined heavily,” he said.
Asked why the corporation had left some of the dug up portions and cuttings across the main roads without asphalting, the official said: “we will do it”, without elaborating.
The official said that the corporation was not permitting anyone to dig up roads between June and November owing to rains.
Ganesh Hosabettu, Mayor, said that the corporation was committed to take action against those who dug or cut the roads illegally. The corporation was not receiving many written complaints to this effect, he said but evaded a query on why the corporation could not initiate suo motto action against offenders.