Sunday, November 10, 2013

Nav Bharat Nagarik Manch
Dt – Nov 10, 2013
For more pics see here: 
Citizen Action Plan:
·          Demand suspension of NHAI Officials responsible for criminal negligence in making the Neera Bridge unsafe and life threatening, by writing a letter to CM. DY CM and NHAI chief
·          Blacklist the Reliance Infra Contractors who did not abide by the mandatory rule of employing 24x7 security guard patrolling and kept the bridge unsafe by not installing crash barrier
·         Demonstrate at Khed-Shivapur Toll Naka demanding cancellation of toll charges till service of Reliance Infra contractors is satisfactory in terms of safety, operation and maintenance
·         File a PIL on the shoddy state of construction and maintenance of all highways in Maharashtra after procuring information under RTI
·         Ask for compensation for the death of four unfortunate victims from NHAI and Reliance
Nav Bharat Nagarik Manch, an informal social platform to address citizen issues, held its first citizen meeting on Sunday, November 10, at 11 a m, at Sarasbaug Garden.
The objective of the meeting was to chalk out an Action Forward Plan regarding the needless deaths of Pune’s four young ad professionals – Pranav Lele, Chintan Buch, Sahil Qureshi and Shrutika Chandwani. While the authorities are conveniently putting the blame on alleged over-speeding and probable alcohol consumption on the driver of the car, it is very clear that lack of a crash barrier; absence of any fluorescent sign board and; absence of the mandatory security guards on 24x7 patrolling were the reasons for the 4 innocent deaths. Also, a similar accident at the same spot a few months ago, wherein an Indica Car had plunged into the Neera River, killing three, yet the NHAI and the contractor agency – Pune Satara Toll Road Pvt Ltd (a subsidiary of Reliance Infra) which did not take immediate action to make commuting on the Neera Bridge, safe.
Leading social and civic activists were present for the meeting. Vijay Kumbhar, leading RTI activist stated that, ``the shoddy and irresponsible work by the contractors and the government department concerned is not restricted only to the Pune-Bangalore Highway but is seen in all the highways of Maharashtra. Hence, we must use RTI to get information on all the highways and file a PIL on their questionable construction as well the lack of adherence to safety norms; maintenance and operations.’’
Srinivas Varunjikar, journalist and Satara based activist stated that, ``despite a series of correspondence and meetings with NHAI authorities requesting them to adhere to safety norms along the 371 kms of the Pune-Bangalore highway that runs through Maharashtra, there has been no response.’’
DVR Rao, noted social activist stated that, ``Since 2012, I’ve been pursuing with NHAI, regarding another stretch near Panchgani of the same highway for lack of safety and bad quality construction but it has fallen into deaf ears. It is time that citizens come together in large numbers and make the officers and contractors responsible for their work.’’
Raja Narasimhan, member of Nav Bharat Nagarik Manch, Pradeep Dixit, calligrapher and social activist; Popatlal Shinghvi and Mr Sancheti of Nav Chaitanya Hasya Club;  Omkar Virkar, noted social activist; Shashikant Kamble and Nagesh J of Maharashtra’s leading Anti-Corruption movement; Ajit Ghatpande and Ms Sonawane, leading social activists of Kasba; Ganesh Gugle, President of Pune district for All India Human Rights Association and; 30 young social activists from Parvati were present.
By Tuesday, the letter to the Chief Minister will be drafted and sent for signatures to citizens.
Vinita Deshmukh
Convener, Nav Bharat Nagarik Manch
98230 36663