ROORKEE/DEHRADUN: Hours after a team of Delhi and district cricket association (DDCA) met injured cricketer Rishabh Pant and said that the accident happened when Pant was trying to avoid a pothole on the Delhi-Dehradun highway, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) repaired the stretch near the accident spot on Saturday night. The development was confirmed by local villagers who told mediapersons about it on Sunday.
Locals at Gurukul Narsan, the spot where Pant met with the accident on Friday, said there were “around half a dozen small-sized potholes on the uneven road stretch and many accidents had taken place at the same spot in the past”.
“Even though NHAI officials quickly repaired a few potholes, it is not sufficient and accidents can keep happening in future,” another villager added.
He alleged that a tiny canal, locally known as ‘Rajwaha’, touches upon the highway from its left and then swirls back 45 degrees to irrigate nearby farmlands. “Traffic authorities had also earlier declared this 40m-long road stretch as a ‘black spot'”, he said.
A farmer and member of Bharatiya Kisan Union, Arvind Rathi, said, “NHAI should acquire some land on the ‘Rajwaha’ side. With this, a proper service lane will be in place and the link road can be merged with it. This will help to broaden the highway on this accident-prone stretch. We’ve raised this matter in the past, but nothing much happened.” Rajesh Kumar Sharma, a local resident, added, “First, the highway at this particular point is narrow. Second, it is uneven. And with the existence of potholes, driving becomes more difficult.”
In September, Ankit Sharma, brother of Bulandshahr MLA Anil Sharma, had met with an accident here when his SUV collided with the divider railings. Pradeep Gusain, project director at NHAI, said that repair works were done for the “damages on the road due to Friday’s accident”. He added: “We were asked by the administration to repair this part. There were no potholes on the road as we carry out repair works on regular intervals.”

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