City dwellers are facing untold sufferings every day due to numerous potholes forming pools of stagnant rainwater on most of the roads in capital Dhaka.
In the situation, normal life of thousands of city people is being seriously hampered as they cannot move freely on the roads due to a huge number of potholes.
According to Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) and Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC), they have around 1,000-kilometre road under DSCC and 1,340-kilometre road under DNCC.
Blaming the monsoon rain for the huge number of potholes on city streets, the officials of the two city corporations admitted that two-thirds of the roads were more or less damaged due to rain.
The sorry state of the streets has made movement from one place to another a nightmarish experience and the situation turned the worst after the monsoon showers began in June, with the authorities concerned remaining as uncaring as ever.
However, locals have blamed poor maintenance, substandard construction, unplanned road digging by different agencies and unapproved heavy vehicle movement on the roads.
Many others hold indiscriminate road digging by authorities concerned just ahead of rainy season and delay in repairing those responsible for increased public sufferings on the city roads and lanes.
The roads in the most miserable condition are Pragati Sarani, Basabo-Nandipara, Mirpur, Jatrabari, Manikganar Biswa, Mazar, Khilgaon-Goran, Begum Rokeya Sarani and Dhanmondi-Rayerbazar roads.
Locals said the potholes in some places were so deep that they look like a waterbody.
During a visit to different places in the capital on Tuesday, it was found that city people were suffering on the roads in different areas due to potholes, particularly in Badda, Rampura, Banashree, Malibagh, Khilgaon, Goran and Mirpur areas.
Dulal Miah, a rickshaw puller of Rampura area, said his rickshaw tumbled several times on the DIT road with passengers, leaving his rickshaw damaged and his passengers injured.
He further said, “Such accidents increase many folds when the roads are submerged in rain water.”
Drivers often complain of having axles of the vehicles broken, shock absorbers ruined, radiators smashed and prop shafts dislodged on a regular basis due to potholes on roads.
“We made only two trips on Tuesday when previously we would make five trips from Abdullahpur to Jatrabari via Pragati Sarani,” said a staff of Turag Paribahan.
Talking to this correspondent, several office-goers, students and motorcyclists said they used to suffer due to the potholes on Rampura-Malibagh road and most of the roads go under rain water even after a light rain.
Taking advantage of the dilapidation of roads, rickshaw-pullers, auto-rickshaw and human hauler drivers charge extra fare as vehicles cannot ply the run-down points easily, said Advocate Sanaul Islam, who used to travel on Rampura-Sadarghat road.
Shafiquel Islam, a resident of Mirpur area and also a student of Tejgoan College, said, “We seriously suffer on Mirpur road every day due to a number of potholes on it.”
City dwellers blamed the city corporations for their negligence in repairing the roads.
They demanded that the roads be repaired immediately. They also asked the city corporations not to do any construction work during the rainy season.
DSCC Mayor Mohammad Sayeed Khokon told media that they have already completed preparation for repairing the damaged roads under his city corporation area and the repairing work will start soon.
“We could not start repairing the roads as monsoon continued. We will repair all the roads within one month after the rain stops, said Md Mesbahul Islam, chief executive officer of DNCC.
He said they permitted city utility providers to dig road considering importance of the development work during rains.