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Do we need transparency and legal processes in new road projects in Bangalore / Karnataka?

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Despite all the calls for good governance and  transparency and so much to do with roads, in terms of corruption why does this kind of news keep on happening.

We dont know whether Tender Sure was discussed by Janagraha IUSF, BCCT etc with many 'experts' as mentioned in the

news converage but the PUBLIC  was not informed leave alone consulted. So how were the calculations made and why so secretly

and this happened very soon after the BBMP announced that over 2,500 crs was spent on roads and we know the reactions to that here http://praja.in/en/blog/srinidhi/2011/09/05/bbmp-spent-2500-cr-blr-roads

This means that despite  DULT / BMLTA etc being part of the governing structure for roads, specifications and BBMP being vested with the streets of Bangalore as per KMC act we need another PPP to make sure govt spends huge money on high cost roads in the Central areas esp around the Metro

in 1997 according to an estimate the cost of roads was hiked from about 15 lakhs / km to Rs 50 lakhs / km so that half concrete and half asphalt roads were possible to take care of cost of  ducts etc but now the cost 15 years later is Rs 500 lakhs / 1.5 km (st marks road from (Residency to Cubbon road ) we know how many layers of asphalt are already there (see box in the link)

http://www.deccanherald.com/content/196325/fifty-roads-8-cities-state.html

there is no mention of why these roads were chosen 

"Several corporate honchos, including Biocon chief Kiran Majumdar Shaw, Infosys executive co-chairman Kris Gopalkrishnan are members/trustee of City Connect".

so this  brings out how PPP uses govt money for its own ends. How does it even become PPP if the govt is spending all the money. It means that 'expertise' is enough.

and if the Mayor or the BBMP council has not been able to garner a grant from the GoK how come a PPP can or should

lastly if an MoU is signed as I expect it should does organisations like BCCF, IUSF, and Janaagraha in the forefront of urban governance not even desire to discuss them and share them with the PUBLIC before they are signed?

Comments

idontspam's picture

Sure-ly better than status quo

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One thing is sure (pun intended), current roads are not worth the money. Even VM road quoted as being ideal does not have speed limit signboards & pedestrian ramp access. You will notice at the junctions that the pedestrians have to jump over the sidewalk barricade.

Secondly there is rampant wrong side driving & illegal street parking on VM road. The cops turn a blind eye to this wrong side driving everywhere in town. Even on a divided road like New BEL road the cops look the other way right in front of the sadishvanagar police station. They should learn from Mumbai where even turn lane violations are caught by the cops. 

I dont see how this is called PPP, terms are being used quite loosely. I agree they should share with the public & take inputs. Let me see if Cityconnect or DULT or BBMP can share the specs with Praja for understanding at least.

Public Agenda's picture

Sorry did you miss the PPP mention ?

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Hi IDS, 

Dont divert the issue.

Point is secret MoUs which end up spending GoK (taxpayers) money (Rs 131 crs on 50 expensive roads out of which 22 are not yet identified) ? so the MoU must be made public before it is signed.

the GoK needs to follow constitutional and court processes. There is no mention of the IRC code but there is branding for SURE ( this could be a confidence building measure for internatinal pre-qualiifcation) 

But 131 crs is a huge amount which Corporators cannot decide on.

this para is in bold above the text ( pl note PPP mentioned in 3rd line)

"A total of 50 roads in eight city corporation limits in the State, including 25 in the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) areas, will be upgraded over the next two years under a public-private-partnership project to help improve urban mobility issues."

they are obviously counting on exactly such an audience which will make the whole thing easier.

hugely expensive roads will benefit mostly the contractors 

The PUBLIC should get access to the TENDER documents bfore the contracts are signed? right ?

because this is not a personal choice like buying a car but PUBLIC expenditure needs to follow certian norms whther it is  SURE or BBMPs own 2500 crs expenditure on roads ( which was also mostly outsourced)

and btw VM road is an ideal ( for tender SURE or the press) from the point of view of how expensive it is  not the road code norms followed!!??

 


idontspam's picture

Monkeys for peanuts

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I do not believe we can get the kind of quality we want at the kind of costs we are currently paying for it. I do believe that the current contracts have a buffer for pilferage which even if plugged is not going to give you the right quality. While VM rd may not be ideal, white topping & dimensions provided there are definitely better and more acceptable for Bangalore. SO be prepared to pay more for roads but definitely cannot accept shoddy roads for that enhanced money. 

Now while I may be right to feel my neighbourhood street has not been picked or that a random favourite street has been picked, we can definitely agree it is a street that belongs to Bangalore & that it should not stop at 50 roads. We are free to ask our corporator to include our street once they are done with some key Bangalore roads which everybody uses.

Now on what exactly these standards are, I am as cueless as anyboy here but if VM road is any thing to go by I can be sure it will be worth it. (and please include a physical median while you are at it, our drivers are not deserving of so much trust)

srinidhi's picture

paper on white topping

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Probably the bungling’s from recent failed projects has made us too critical of everything that BBMP/authorities start on..

Keeping that aside..here are excerpts from an article/whitepaper on white topping which is a dire need for blr roads!

In South India, several concrete roads were constructed during the last century which have given excellent service for over four decades, the examples being the Bangalore-Mysore road constructed by the then Maharaja of Mysore. Due to lack of experience and expertise in white topping, these roads were converted to flexible overlays in recent times.

more here..this has the tech details to feast on..

A more recent example is that of Suranjan Das road which is now being readied for widening. The existing concrete road is in very good condition except that it is just two lanes..now they will remove this road and lay a wider asphalt section which will start another saga of unending woes…

Instead of letting vested interests driving decisions, BBMP should start building its expertise on white topping and make it mandatory on all roads of blr..

There are some very good examples of roads with white topping from recent times..Madivala road, VM road, SP road..we just need to spread the good practice!

Public Agenda's picture

street food flavourss

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its like the flavour of the month 

many kids  favourite street food is ice cream/ pani puri / or gobi manjurian

anything is great because some kids like their flavour of choice and their parents are forced to buy it for their children...

similar to how  wonderful that more roads will be white topped after Tender SURE !!! hear the applause now?

who cares about the expenditure increase?

tender sure says everyone should love their flavour right?

so let evryone be happy they  are getting "world class"  roads (whatever that means)

why bother about the KMC act and rules why bother about amending them if secret MoU s are possible ?

and why bother about the Corprators in 10 cities they are all corrput anyway ?

and the overlords have come to sweep all the dirt away for sure!!


srinidhi's picture

road works transparency finally ?!

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http://www.vijaykarnataka...

If todays news item is to be trusted then we will soon have a  website having all the road inventory and road works details. All in one place. This will surely go a long way in curbing the corruption with road works..

Need to see how this spans out!

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