The roads department of the BMC has decided to prioritise pothole repairs on routes which are mostly used to carry the Ganpati idols to the mandals. In fact, the civic body has planned to complete phase I of the work by August 15.
"Since the festival starts on August 29, the idols will start coming by August 25. So, from August 16 to August 24, we plan to finish the second phase of the pothole repair work," said additional municipal commissioner SVR Srinivas.
He added, "A week ago, in another meeting with all the assistant municipal commissioners, we had asked them to identify roads with potholes, which will be used by mandals to bring the idols."
Srinivas also said that he has requested all the mandals to ensure they make less trenches. "There are more than 11,000 mandals and if each of them makes even five trenches, many trenches will be created on the roads. Tax payers' money is wasted on the repairwork. We have also requested them to put up less advertisements," he said.
On Wednesday, Naresh Dahibhavkar, president of Brihanmumbai Sarvajanik Ganeshotsav Samanvaya Samiti had a meeting with mayor Sunil Prabhu and civic officials, in which the organisation presented a list of 3,000 potholes on roads along which the idol is brought.
Dahibhavkar said, "The trenches dug up by us are filled in four days, but the potholes on the road stay on."
A photo booklet of potholes clicked by a 10-year-old boy, Sunil Shinde, was also presented at the meeting. Dahibhavkar said that if any good photograph of a pothole is clicked after August 24, the person will receive an award from the mandal.
In a new decision, new idol makers can also set up mandals this year on footpaths, provided they have the BMC and traffic police permissions in place.