- Three days after Shanthakumar was swept away in a storm drain, his body remains untraceable.
- Over 300 persons including, BBMP, Fire and Emergency Department and State Disaster Response Force have searched for the body on a 15 km stretch
- Sadly, had BBMP put garbage and silt traps, by investing merely Rs 12,000, Shanthakumar may have been saved.
The BBMP, which is trying to trace Shanthkumar, the silt-excavator swept away while working in the storm water drain near Kuruburahalli, should be held responsible for his death, as they failed to put up garbage and silt traps in the drains.
According to civic activists and experts, the BBMP should have put steel guards at crucial junctions and turnings, to prevent garbage and silt from entering the storm water drain. But the irony is that the civic body did not put up these fences, even though the cost was a mere Rs 12000.
"Had they put such guards, his life could have been saved," says, Ram Prasad, Convenor, Friends Of Lakes.
Echoing similar sentiments Urban Expert Naresh Narasimhan lashed out at BBMP authorities and District Incharge Minister KJ George, holding them responsible for the death. “The government thinks of Infrastructure only for VIPs but it has nothing for the poor. This project to clean and desilt and repair all the storm water drains should have been taken in January and finished by April. But the mindless administration is taking it up now when it is raining. All the public money is also going down the drain," he said.
Meanwhile, the Fire and Emergency, State Disaster Response Force, along with BBMP, have jointly pressed 300 people near the Vrushabhavathi basin at Kumbalgod in Bengaluru outskirts to trace the missing worker.
"We have pressed 20 experts and engineers along with map on the Storm Water Drain Connecting Kumbalgodu. The workers had covered over 10 kms stretch and now we will be searching at Kambipura as this is connecting Vrushabhavathi river basin," said Sidde Gowda, BBMP Chief Engineer of the storm water drain.
The fire force and disaster response force personnel at the job are finding it difficult to trace the man as the storm water drain also has sewage and silt inflow and this is hindering any progress.
"We have put all our efforts but the sewage flow is making our job tough. All the crucial junctions and turning have been searched and now we will extensively search near Parathana Palaya culvert near Bidadi. We have suspended the operation for today and will begin tomorrow," said Regional Fire Officer Rama Krishna.
BBMP yet to announce compensation
BBMP which now has to announce the compensation for the death of the worker, says they are waiting for the missing person's body. Terming the incident as unfortunate Mayor Padmavathi said, once the body is found, the family will be given compensation.
"To announce compensation, we need to get the body. The BBMP will continue to search for one more day before arriving at any conclusion," she said and added that, the BBMP engineers will also be instructed to put the garbage and silt traps.
BBMP engineers can't take leave in monsoon: Mayor
Realising the seriousness of the matter and ongoing developments works during the monsoon, the Mayor has summoned all Chief Engineers of the eight zones and issued a standing instruction to work without any breaks or leave till the monsoon ends.
"The rain season will end in September and till then no engineers from wards will go on leave. The circular from BBMP commissioner will be sent shortly," she said.
Last Updated 31, Mar 2018, 7:04 PM IST