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While city infra crumbles, 969 engineer posts lie vacant in BMC

Mumbai’s infrastructure is crumbling. Bridge collapses, potholes, rains and fires claim lives of residents of the city. It is not easy to build infrastructure projects in Mumbai. The city is very dense. Mumbai is facing a lot of infrastructure problems. At the same time, 969 posts out of 4,482 of civic engineers in the BMC are vacant. This was revealed by a reply to an RTI query.

According to the city engineer’s office, activist Anil Galgali had asked the query to the office. The city engineer’s office also gave a report for the October 1 to December 31, 2018. As per the report, 4,485 posts of junior engineer, sub-engineer, assistant engineer, executive engineer and deputy chief engineer were approved. Of these, 969 posts were vacant and 3,516 were working. Considering the large scale of work BMC takes up, these vacant posts should be filled up as early as possible.

A bridge near CST in Mumbai collapsed, killing six people in March this year. Notably, no issues were flagged when the bridge which collapsed was audited by BMC. BMC’s 2018 report highlighted that the bridge needed minor repairs but the incident dismissed all the findings. While Elphinstone tragedy created quite an uproar and the government was slammed from all quarters, no one learned any lesson. In July last year, a portion of a 40-year-old bridge collapsed in Andheri killing two people. But the problems of Mumbaikars aren’t limited to Railways and bridges. Frequent fires also kill residents of Mumbai. The Kamala Mills fire accident, in which 14 people died, revealed that enough precautions haven’t been taken to avert any fire tragedy. Fire incidents kept claiming lives. In December 2018, ESIC Hospital in Kamgar caught fire killing 13 people. It seems no one takes fire safety norms seriously in Mumbai. Aa per a report,  nearly 2,600 high rises violated rules in the last four years.

Residents of Mumbai are not lucky to get potholes-free roads. Rapping BMC for ignoring its order on potholes, a division bench of Bombay HC said that the civic body shows laxity because they know Mumbaikars are tolerant. The first rains of monsoon killed 26 persons in Mumbai recently. On the other hand, the Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Rout said that the BMC and Shiv Sena are not responsible for whatever happened in Mumbai, blame the monsoon.

According to consultancy firm McKinsey as reported by Livemint, Mumbai needs $220 billion (approximately Rs 14,74,000 crore or Rs 14.74 trillion) of investment in hard infrastructure and smart technology over the next 20 years to be future-proof.  The report of McKinsey found that Indian cities fare much worse than even Latin American and African metros in adoption of technology, the McKinsey report said. The study, put together by the McKinsey Global Institute (MGI), the research division of the consultancy, evaluated 50 major global cities for their smartness. With the highest score set at 37 points, Jaipur scored only 2.7 (lowest among the cities studied), Pune 6.4 (at par with Nairobi) and Mumbai 8.8, ranking below counterparts such as Mexico City and Cape Town. These were the three Indian cities that made it to the 50 that were studied.

McKinsey estimates that Mumbai needs $220 billion to build hard and smart infrastructure till 2035. Suveer Sinha, partner, McKinsey was quoted by Livemint as saying, “There are no 20-year infrastructure plans for cities. City governments create plans for their individual terms. Therefore, there is no comparable government figure for how much the city’s corporation will spend to create infrastructure over this period.”

Mumbai lags behind other Indian cities in infrastructure

According to an expert, Mumbai lacks the political push that’s needed for infrastructure projects, while the government and state agencies in other cities are collectively working on clearing logjam on the ground so that they can expedite infrastructure projects. Many cities such as Delhi, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Jaipur rapidly developed metro lines to ferry people. Mumbaikars feel left behind. Mumbai was the city where careers were made earlier, so people were ready to struggle everyday in the trains or fight the traffic on roads. Now other cities offer growth opportunity and have better in.

ELECTRICITY

45 lakhTotal no of power consumers

3 million – Reliance Energy 0.95 million – BEST 0.60-0.65 million – Tata Power

ELECTRICITY DEMAND

During Summer- 3,600 MwOther months- 2,700 Mw

LAW AND ORDER

50,600 No of Policemen in city

94 – No of Police Stations The BPRD data till Jan 2016 says,  Maharashtra had 1:625 police public ratio, which means one policeman for 625 people

WATER

City gets water supply from 7 sources namely Tulsi, Vihar, Tansa Modak Sagar, Middle Vaitarna, Upper Vaitarna and Bhatsa. Net supply to city is 3,750 MLD (excluding en-route supply and transmission losses). However, the city needs around 4,200 MLD water daily. The extra 450 MLD of water will come from 5 state-of-art infra projects like the lake-tapping of Modak Sagar & installing recycling plants at the Bhandup and Panjrapol water complexes

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