That Mumbai's roads are a mess is a given.
In fact, the first thing that strikes any newcomer to the city, is its woeful traffic.
It's a no-brainer that half the mess is on account of the city's pathetic roads. The country's richest city doesn't know a thing about road maintenance, it seems.
So year after year, crores are spent on filling the same potholes at the exact same spots. It's a cosy little arrangement for those involved, except that it puts the citizen, and the city's reputation, to shame.
Like today, traffic on the Western Express highway, the arterial link between the city and its Western suburbs and beyond, to industrialised Gujarat, has taken hours to crawl. If you have a flight to catch, or worse if someone dear to you is in an ambulance, only God help you. The traffic bosses can't.
And why is the traffic extra-abysmal today?
Because potholes near the Santacruz airport junction have narrowed the flow to just two lanes.
You will think filling potholes is not exactly rocket science, but that could put you in conflict with those in charge of the city's (mis)management. Here committees are formed, PILs are filed, reports are filed, crores are spent, and at the end of it all the citizen suffers grievously.
If you are a Mumbai-ite, you must have your favourite traffic nightmare story. Tell us about it, it may not make our city's decision-makers sit up and take notice, but at least others can know this may be a city whose pavements are filled with gold dust, but its roads are full of potholes.