Bhubaneswar: With the arrival of monsoon in the State, Housing and Urban Development (H&UD) Principal Secretary G Mathi Vathanan asked heads of all Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) to ensure accident-free roads, drains.
For this purpose, Mr.Mathi Vathanan has written a letter to all the Commissioners of Municipal Corporations and Executive Officers of all Municipalities & NACs.
He asked take up desilting of the drains regularly by the respective road & drain agencies to ensure free flow of stormwater during the rainy season.
“It was made clear to all concerned that all the drains under the jurisdiction of your Urban Local Body excepting the major open drains should have been covered with slabs and the vulnerable points should have been covered with net with warning written prominently on the said points to caution the people about the danger,” the Principal Secretary said.
It is also important to replace/repair the drain covers or inspection chambers on the roads /drains properly to avoid accidents, he suggested.
Mr.Mathi Vathanan said that during or after desilting or maintenance work, the openings are not covered properly leading to accidents when the place is flooded during heavy rains. There were incidents of accidents with a few fatalities in the past evoking strong public reaction, causing adverse media reports and also bringing bad name for the Government. They also result in cases in the Human rights commission and courts.
Now that the monsoon has already hit the state, it is time for the administration to get into the enforcement mode to ensure that instructions issued in this regard are fully complied by the respective agencies/ officials, he directed.
The agencies such as ULBs, Works Department, Water resources department, IDCO, NHAI, etc., have their roads and drains in the towns are responsible for complying with the instructions to ensure that their roads and drains do not become death traps during urban flooding in the monsoon times.
The ULB with the elected Mayor/ Chairperson at the helm of affairs to enforce the instructions of the Government issued in public interest, he added.
The Commissioners and Executive Officers have been asked to issue instructions to all the subordinate agencies/officials in charge of maintenance of the roads and drains to get the roads and drains once again verified through field inspection and thereafter to take up periodical inspection on a regular basis.
Further, the H&UD Department has asked the officers to furnish certificate to the effect that ” all the roads & drains under their respective jurisdiction and administrative control have been physically inspected and it is hereby certified that all the openings and inspection chambers are properly closed and all unsafe spots are properly guarded and safety sign boards are erected and there is no more unsafe spots endangering public safety”.
Such certificates may be obtained from all the field officials countersigned by their supervising officers from all the relevant agencies/departments, he said.
The certificate will be shared with the Ward Committee and other members including Mission Sakthi groups/federations from the respective ward areas for cross verification from the field and corrective follow up actions by the ULBs to ensure that public roads and drains remain safe always.
It was decided that the certificates from all the agencies/department officers should be obtained before June 30, 2022 and the compiled certificates pertaining to the wards are sent to the Ward Committees before July 7, 2022.
The Principal Secretary Housing & Urban Development asked to submit a compliance report to the Department by July 10,2022 without fail.