Pundalik Raut Dessai, a councillor of the Corporation of City of Panaji (CCP) of Altinho areas, in a conversation with ‘The Navhind Times’ reporter Shaikh Jamaluddin has said that he favours adopting universal accessible walkway project on the lines of that in Indore. He is of the opinion that it will resolve the traffic blockages arising out due to road digging and cutting for laying utility cables
- What made you propose utility ducting or universal accessible walkways in Panaji?
A group of councillors had along with the CEO of Imagine Panaji Smart City Development Ltd Swayandipta Pal Chaudhuri had a first-hand account of the concept. People there are enjoying the benefits, so I think that if the concept is adopted in our tiny city, it can do wonders.
- Can you tell me in what way the Indore Municipal Corporation (IMC) has utilised footpaths?
Everything that include electricity wires, TV cables, telephone cables, cooking gas pipeline, water pipeline except sewerage lines have been laid through .75 metre wide universal accessible walkways and covered with cement slabs.
Q.How do they do the rectification if something goes wrong?
It’s very easy. They just remove the cement slabs and attend to the fault and place them back without any difficulty. Provision for other pipelines can be made provided the companies pay fees and seek permission from the authorities.
Q.In what way it will benefit the CCP and other departments?
In Goa every now and then, roads are dug up or cut causing traffic blockages. This will stop and inconvenience caused to the pedestrians and motorists would cease besides there will be monetary gains for the state.
Q.Are you proposing it for the whole state or only for Panaji city?
On a trial basis, the CCP in association with Imagine Panaji Smart City Development Ltd can undertake the project in Panaji especially in my ward of Altinho or at the Kadamba Plateau where gutters are yet to be built and work of LED street light is yet to be undertaken. Then slowly phase-wise, it can be replicated all over Goa as it is a tiny state.
Q.The idea is good, but the state requires funds for implementation. What do you have to say on this?
Putting ideas into practice is not my job. I can only make suggestions. Over Rs 10 crore house taxes is outstanding and if recovered, then CCP can use it for universal accessible walkway project without affecting the government kitty.