Mysuru: The controversial Rs.12 crore road straightening work on Hunsur Road, which has faced the ire and opposition of the public, has now reached the Office of the Union Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari.
In an e-mail letter to the Minister, Mysore Grahakara Parishat (MGP) has urged him to withdraw the project and instead ask the officials of the engineering department concerned to utilise the Rs.12 crore for more productive purposes.
In the letter, the copies of which were released to the media, MGP Secretary M.M. Shenoi has said that the project is wrongly conceived and not at all necessary.
Referring to the project called “Improvement to curve in the Black Spot of NH275 in Mysore City limit in front of the Jaladarshini Guest House (Job No. CRF-KNT-2016-17-1640 dated 02.11.2016),” MGP pointed out that the occurrence of accidents can be prevented by construction of IRC standard rumble-strips and speed-breakers at a cost of about Rs. 2 lakh.
MGP has argued that the fatal accidents that have occurred are due to over-speeding and not due to the curve on the road. There are many roads in Mysuru, which need improvement by way of construction of proper and adequate longitudinal and cross drainage (absent on many roads) and construction of pedestrian footpaths, which will reduce accidents significantly. “The same Rs. 12 crore of public funds spent on such works have obvious multiple public benefits,” Shenoi said.
The 450-metre section of the road in question, namely between Valmiki Road and Kalamandira within City limits, is part of Vinoba Road (not Hunsur Road as stated in the project) which is designated as “Heritage Road” in Mysuru Master Plan – 2031. The Mysuru Master Plan – 2031 is published by Mysuru Urban Development Authority (MUDA) and sanctioned by Government of Karnataka.
The road-straightening project will violate and destroy the heritage status of the road and the adjoining heritage precincts, said Shenoi in the letter.