A Metropolis that generates so much wealth is lacking in infrastructure safety

admin
By admin March 18, 2019 17:15

A Metropolis that generates so much wealth is lacking in infrastructure safety

Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus pedestrian bridge has collapsed in Mumbai recently taking toll on 6 lives. The administration seems to have learnt no lessons from the past incidents.

Past Incidents

  1. Elphinstone Road station bridge mishap – Mumbai’s deadliest bridge mishap occurred in 2017, when 23 people died in a stampede on an overcrowded railway foot-over-bridge at Elphinstone Road station.
  2. At the same Elphinstone Road Station a ceiling tile from a foot overbridge fell on a woman’s head, injuring her.
  3. There is chronic toll of eight people, on average, dying every day on the Mumbai’s railway tracks.
  4. In 2017 itself, a 67-year-old man sustained wrist injuries after some stairs of a foot overbridge at Charni Road station collapsed.
  5. In 2018, a 47-year-old Andheri bridge collapsed. It had undergone a structural audit just seven months before it collapsed.

Administrative Lacunae

  • At Civic Body level – The infrastructure development and safety of Mumbai comes under BMC. Thus, at very first stage it’s the responsibility of BMC to check the quality of infrastructure. The core issue of lack of supervision is repeatedly highlighted by these incidents.
  • At Auditing Body level – The structural audit was not carried out correctly and major lapses are observed in conducting the structural audit within a short period of submission of report which was on August 13, 2018. The structural safety auditor had certified the bridge to be in ‘good’ condition among a total of 39 bridges.
  • At State Level – The incident was a result of "negligence" at the part of state government. As the frequency of such incidents is too high in Mumbai it’s the responsibility of state government to make high level committee enquiring these incidents and prepare a roadmap for better and safe infrastructure.
  • At Ministry Level – Railway and Urban development both should take the responsibility.

Urban Development

  • Smart City Mission (SCM ) – SCM is an urban renewal and retrofitting program by the Government of India with the mission to develop 100 cities across the country making them citizen friendly and sustainable.
  • Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) – The scheme was launched by Prime Minister with the focus to establish infrastructure that could ensure adequate robust sewage networks and water supply for urban transformation by implementing urban revival projects.
  • Setu Bharatam Project – Setu Bharatam was launched by Prime Minister in 2016 with an aim to make all national highways free of railway crossings by 2019.
  • Swaccha Bharat Mission – Its is a nation-wide campaign in India for the period 2014 to 2019 that aims to clean up the streets, roads and infrastructure of India's cities, towns, and rural areas.

Challenges in Urban Development

  • Migration and overpopulation issue – The planning of infrastructure is generally based on the current population of city but population pressure further increases the pressure on these infrastructures.
  • Delayed Projects – The delay in implementing the projects actually defeat the purpose of these infrastructures.
  • Corruption – The rampant corruption has stunted the country's infrastructure development.
  • Political will – A national urban policy has to be framed which should specifically focus on public safety. But its formation is still hanged in between leaders’ discussion but no concrete steps have been taken yet.
  • Planning level deficiencies at ULBs – ULBs working is still based on age old methodologies. A comprehensive, modern and proactive planning is the need of the hour.

Way Ahead

  • Need for a comprehensive framework that takes a holistic approach to the interrelated challenges that have an impact on the growth of cities.
  • Since majority of city-related issues are state subject, states must take the lead in order to make cities vibrant economic centres.
  • The Provision of the 74 th Constitution Amendment Act should be implemented by the civic bodies in true spirit.
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Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus pedestrian bridge has collapsed in Mumbai recently taking toll on 6 lives. The administration seems to have learnt no lessons from the past incidents.

Past Incidents

  1. Elphinstone Road station bridge mishap – Mumbai’s deadliest bridge mishap occurred in 2017, when 23 people died in a stampede on an overcrowded railway foot-over-bridge at Elphinstone Road station.
  2. At the same Elphinstone Road Station a ceiling tile from a foot overbridge fell on a woman’s head, injuring her.
  3. There is chronic toll of eight people, on average, dying every day on the Mumbai’s railway tracks.
  4. In 2017 itself, a 67-year-old man sustained wrist injuries after some stairs of a foot overbridge at Charni Road station collapsed.
  5. In 2018, a 47-year-old Andheri bridge collapsed. It had undergone a structural audit just seven months before it collapsed.

Administrative Lacunae

  • At Civic Body level – The infrastructure development and safety of Mumbai comes under BMC. Thus, at very first stage it’s the responsibility of BMC to check the quality of infrastructure. The core issue of lack of supervision is repeatedly highlighted by these incidents.
  • At Auditing Body level – The structural audit was not carried out correctly and major lapses are observed in conducting the structural audit within a short period of submission of report which was on August 13, 2018. The structural safety auditor had certified the bridge to be in ‘good’ condition among a total of 39 bridges.
  • At State Level – The incident was a result of "negligence" at the part of state government. As the frequency of such incidents is too high in Mumbai it’s the responsibility of state government to make high level committee enquiring these incidents and prepare a roadmap for better and safe infrastructure.
  • At Ministry Level – Railway and Urban development both should take the responsibility.

Urban Development

  • Smart City Mission (SCM ) – SCM is an urban renewal and retrofitting program by the Government of India with the mission to develop 100 cities across the country making them citizen friendly and sustainable.
  • Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation (AMRUT) – The scheme was launched by Prime Minister with the focus to establish infrastructure that could ensure adequate robust sewage networks and water supply for urban transformation by implementing urban revival projects.
  • Setu Bharatam Project – Setu Bharatam was launched by Prime Minister in 2016 with an aim to make all national highways free of railway crossings by 2019.
  • Swaccha Bharat Mission – Its is a nation-wide campaign in India for the period 2014 to 2019 that aims to clean up the streets, roads and infrastructure of India's cities, towns, and rural areas.

Challenges in Urban Development

  • Migration and overpopulation issue – The planning of infrastructure is generally based on the current population of city but population pressure further increases the pressure on these infrastructures.
  • Delayed Projects – The delay in implementing the projects actually defeat the purpose of these infrastructures.
  • Corruption – The rampant corruption has stunted the country's infrastructure development.
  • Political will – A national urban policy has to be framed which should specifically focus on public safety. But its formation is still hanged in between leaders’ discussion but no concrete steps have been taken yet.
  • Planning level deficiencies at ULBs – ULBs working is still based on age old methodologies. A comprehensive, modern and proactive planning is the need of the hour.

Way Ahead

  • Need for a comprehensive framework that takes a holistic approach to the interrelated challenges that have an impact on the growth of cities.
  • Since majority of city-related issues are state subject, states must take the lead in order to make cities vibrant economic centres.
  • The Provision of the 74 th Constitution Amendment Act should be implemented by the civic bodies in true spirit.
admin
By admin March 18, 2019 17:15