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Time for intolerence: Mumbai residents must stop being so apathetic about their city’s neglect

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The “high level of tolerance” of Mumbai’s residents has allowed the city’s municipal corporation to ignore their comfort – and even safety. That is what Bombay High Court Chief Justice Naresh Patil observed on Thursday, as he heard a clutch of petitions about the rising number of accidents and deaths of motorists due to pothole-ridden roads.

Later that day, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation offered an even more gruesome demonstration of its inefficiency and callousness. A pedestrian bridge leading to the Chhhatrapati Shivaji railway terminus collapsed at rush hour, killing six people and injuring more than 25.

The Bombay High Court has repeatedly warned the municipal corporation about the shoddy quality of road construction. The municipality’s disregard even for the High Court shows the deep rot that has set in in the organisation, once the pride of civic governance in India. Hours after the collapse, Municipal Commissioner Ajoy Mehta, whose office is literally next door to the bridge, had not yet faced the media.

The bridge collapse is the latest in a series of calamities that have been heaped on ordinary Mumbaikars, for whom just walking in their neighbourhoods or commuting to work is a terrible ordeal.

Few things illustrate the brutal disregard for the residents of........

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