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Those travelling on the Adi Shankaracharya Marg in Powai undergo a terrifying experience as the road is in a state of mess, owing to the ongoing road widening process

A Correspondent

>> (Left) Traffic jams like this have become a very common site on the ADS Road. (below) The stretch near IIT gate is the worst, as pedestrians and vehicles try and maneuver through the road

Horrendous noise, dust and endless traffic snarls are some of the aspects that one comes across while driving down the Adi Shankaracharya Road in Powai. This road is a part of the mega Jogeshwari-Vikhroli Link Road (JVLR) project and is subjected to a complete makeover by Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA). The objective of this project under MUTP is to establish connectivity between the eastern and western suburbs. However, travelling along the one-km stretch between Gandhinagar junction in Vikhroli up to Powai, according to several commuters, is a terrifying experience.

The work, which commenced last year, is still going on at a snails’ pace. Local residents state that the road is in a state of mess owing to the ongoing road widening process. "At various spots along the stretch, the work has come to a standstill and we do not see workers at the site. It takes almost 45 minutes to reach the other end of this road," states Ketan Mirchandani, a commuter travelling along this route. Likewise, Kishore Singhvi, a local resident, says, "People prefer to walk down the distance instead of opting for vehicles. Those travelling by autos have to shell out extra money due to traffic jams."

However, Dilip Kawathkar, joint project director of MMRDA asserts to complete the project before the advent of monsoons, but the residents snub his claims. The condition of road is as such that loosely placed temporary road dividers act as stepping stones to fall. Bikers also find it difficult to negotiate their way through the temporary dividers thus making the road accident prone. "At night, it is worse as the streetlights are insufficient to light the entire area. It is indeed sad to note that a project funded by the World Bank is in such a repentant state," laments Rohit R, a software executive employed with a private firm in Powai.

Charu Sharma, the local corporator finds herself equally helpless. "As a resident of Powai, I am also facing the same problems. I have complained a number of times to the civic authorities regarding the issue but no one came here monitor the quality of work. We have witnessed several accidents on this stretch. There are various spots that are always in dark hence we place lanterns to guide the public." Moreover, as the road is not tarred, dust and pollution are major problems worrying those who dare to walk down this road.