Why the DND Toll-Free Reader is wreaking havoc | News from Noida



Noida: A lifeline for intercity travel since its inauguration in January 2001, the 9.2 km Delhi-Noida-Direct Flyway (DND) no longer looks like the flagship infrastructure project for which it was designed.
A pale shadow of herself, she has encountered the fate of many Indian roads: patches of rough surfaces and potholes, damaged road signs, street lights extinguished in places, missing road markings. at others and garbage collecting along the shoulders.
Rakesh Jha, a resident of Noida, who regularly takes DND to Delhi, wonders why the potholes are not filled immediately on such a major road. He said the ride got bumpier at the Delhi Flyway entrance near the toll station and intermittently elsewhere. Jha also regularly tweeted about non-functioning toilets and street lights along DND.
The state of DND surprised Avnish Kumar, who lives in Sector 71 (Noida), when he returned to duty after a break from work at home caused by a pandemic. “I have lived in Noida for 25 years and commute between Delhi and Delhi, but I have never seen the DND flyway in such a state. Take street lights, for example. Some are working on the part between Noida and the old tollgate, but as you drive towards Delhi I find most are not lit. Can’t understand why they don’t work? ” He asked.
Surbhi Chandel, a student residing in Noida, said that a well-lit road would be more reassuring for a biker like her, as would the presence of an ambulance and a police patrol vehicle, especially at night when traffic was in traffic. is accelerating. . “Driving on DND isn’t what it used to be, especially for those like me who use the flyway at late hours,” said Chandel.
Brajesh Sharma, a resident of Antriksh Golf View 2 in Sector 78, who had filed a complaint with the Noida authority about the dysfunctional DND streetlights, said: “About nine months ago, some of the lights have been repaired. But many of them are not yet functional. Sharma pointed to the notice boards and banners that are prominently displayed throughout the DND section. “So how can you say that there is no income flowing in? The money that goes into the maintenance of the road isn’t it? he said.
The Noida Toll Bridge Company Limited (NTBCL), which is the custodian of DND, derives advertising revenue from advertisements on billboards and porticoes along DND, which is under the jurisdiction of the Noida Authority, South Delhi Municipal Corporation and the East Delhi Municipal Corporation. The Noida Authority has now stopped donating its space to NTBCL due to a disagreement over payment of license fees and collection notices. The NTBCL did not share details of the revenue it earned from the advertisements of the two Delhi companies.
But the problems for DND began after toll collection from commuters was stopped following directives from the Allahabad Supreme Court and High Court in October 2016.
The MDN toll was overturned by the High Court, which heard a petition from FONRWA, a group of welfare associations of residents of Noida, against the “excessive” user fees charged to commuters (Rs 25 , a one-way ticket for a car) and ruled in its favor.
Financial difficulties at its parent company have also affected NTBCL, which is a special purpose vehicle launched by infrastructure giant IL&FS. DND was designed to operate under the Build-Own-Operate-Transfer (BOOT) model in the concession agreement signed between the Noida Authority, IL&FS and NTBCL in 1997. IL&FS was responsible for all investments in the project and the agreement gave NTBCL control of DND for 30 years from the date of the contract, or until IL&FS could recoup its entire investment. NTBCL argued that it had not been able to recover its costs, but the court, which reviewed audit reports of its revenues, rejected that claim.
Not having to pay tolls was a relief for commuters, but no roadmap was discussed for DND maintenance. NP Singh, former president of FONRWA, said that when the court ordered that NTBCL toll collection be removed from DND, he made no comment on the maintenance of the bridge.
“Therefore, it is the responsibility of the Noida Authority and the Delhi Government to carry out maintenance work on the DND Flyway via NTBCL. We will write to both state governments on the matter, ”Singh said. In addition, most of the key roads require major repairs and a safety audit after 20 years of operation. For DND, no such exercise has yet been conducted.
Noida Authority CEO Ritu Maheshwari said issues such as potholes, dysfunctional streetlights and broken railings were in the “Delhi part” of the flyway. “We had written to our Delhi counterpart to start working on the same. They started to fill the potholes, ”she told TOI.
Asked about the lack of maintenance, Maheshwari said NTBCL had appealed to the Supreme Court against the High Court’s order to stop toll collection. “The case is still pending before the Supreme Court. The Toll Bridge Company is currently not doing any work. Many notices have been sent. Pothole repair work is currently being carried out by the local administration, ”she said.
In an email response, however, the NTBCL told TOI that the “Operation and Maintenance (O&M) obligations of the Noida Toll Bridge (including landscaping, security, cleaning, repairs) minor, pothole repair and electrical repair) are performed diligently, regularly and efficiently by the company despite the suspension of user fee collection since October 2016 and the government default of UP & Noida its obligations under the concession contract to indemnify the concessionaire due to a change in law and (the) authority unilaterally seeking to nullify DND advertising revenues and disrupt and interfere with NTBCL revenues ”.
The company claimed that the works were “periodically reviewed by an independent engineer”, jointly appointed under the concession contract by the lenders, Noida and NTBCL, and that the monthly reports were submitted to the Authority. “The October report has already been submitted to the Authority and no complaints or concerns regarding O&M obligations were noted in the report,” he said.
NTBCL said it could not comment on its appeal regarding HC’s judgment and issues relating to the completion and financing of major maintenance work, as they were pending. “It can be emphasized that despite the lack of support from Noida, UP government and NCT Delhi government, NTBCL has not delayed or missed its license fees to EDMC and SDMC, made utility payments and ‘timely and efficient operation and maintenance, and continues to support bridge maintenance in a timely and efficient manner,’ he said.

Source link


About Author

Comments are closed.