Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel: Becoming an air pollution hazard to the riders on this route

The entrance to the Pink City Jaipur is being guided to the visitors by the Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel which is nestled on the Agra Road. The Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel dates back it's built about 3 years back.  The tunnel is 1700 meters long in its length.

Suffocation to the riders inside Ghat Ki Guni: Non-working exhaust fans

It has been observed that the riders of vehicles in this tunnel are suffering from exhaustion and asphyxiation. The tunnel is equipped with 20 exhaust fans in its interior but majority of them are not in a working condition. The non-working condition of these exhaust fans inside the tunnel is leading to a build-up of the smoke that is emitted from the vehicles that causes suffocation to the people riding inside it.

Jaipur to Agra and vice versa:

The Ghat Ki Guni tunnel is built with two sides, just like a normal road.  One side of the road leads the riders from the city of Jaipur to Agra and the other side of the road leads the riders from Agra to the city of Jaipur. The Jaipur to Agra road is 865 meters long whereas the Agra to Jaipur road is 835 meters long.

Thousands of vehicles drive in the Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel everyday:

In a day's span of 24 hours, an approximate of more than 20,000 vehicles pass through the tunnel.
No pollution checks:

There has been no pollution check being done inside the tunnel since the time of its built.  The maintenance and care of the tunnel is being overlooked by the Jaipur Development Authority (JDA), which also has not made any provisions for maintaining a pollution check inside the tunnel.

Rain water percolates inside the tunnel:

Rain water also seeps in through the walls of the tunnel. Another miss in the tunnel is that its lights are not functioning properly and do not light up the way of the riders.

Night Market development - A dream?

It has been known and said that there was a night market to be developed in the interior of the Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel.  Security of the buildings of the tunnel was also to take place to help the tourists to visit these buildings. Present scenario has no night market or even anything near to it being developed.

Ghat Ki Guni and its highlights:

  • The Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel connects the T.P. Nagar Chauraha to the Agra road.
  • There have been a total of 17 accidents inside the tunnel.
  • 10 accidents took place in the year 2015.
  • 7 accidents have taken place in the year 2016 from its beginning up to the present date.
  • The construction cost of the Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel is about 150 crores INR.
  • A basic of 4-5 Challans is an everyday scenario in the Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel due to over loading of the vehicles.
  • Overloading is prohibited inside the tunnel. Even though this rule has been laid down, but still overloading is an everyday practice.
  • Traffic rules are not being followed at all by the riders inside the tunnel.
  • Speed limit has been prescribed inside the tunnel, even after which vehicles are driven at a high speed inside.

Contradictory responses from officials related to the operations of Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel:

Officers of Jaipur Development Authority (JDA) on being asked about the non-working state of the exhaust fans inside the Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel, stated that the exhaust fans are automatically operated.  Employees inside the control room of the tunnel stated that when the pollution level crosses 50 PPM (parts per million), the exhaust fans are started by them.

Here’s the contradiction:

What’s contradictory here is that if the fans are automatically operated, then why don’t they work by themselves when the pollution level rises or if they are turned on by the employees of the control room, then why is there a carelessness in turning the exhaust fans on when pollution is experienced.

And the officials responsible for working have to say:

All the exhaust fans installed in the Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel operate automatically. When smoke or pollution levels rise inside the tunnel, the fans automatically begin to work. The fans can also be operated manually from the control room. Repairing of the dead fans will be done now.
-Sanjeev Kumar Jain, Superintendent Engineer, Jaipur Development Authority

There has been no complaint that has been registered on account of measuring the pollution inside the Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel. If there is a complaint filed against this, then the pollution check will be performed. In the best of our efforts, we will try to resolve all the issues faced that are faced.

-Vikram Singh Sankhala, State Pollution Control Board

Vehicles which pass through the Ghat Ki Guni Tunnel and are overloaded and in avoidance with the laid traffic rules, then the traffic police on duty there charges a penalty fee (Challan) for such vehicles. Even after this if overloaded vehicles are passing through the tunnel then other strict measures will be followed.

-Mukesh Joshi, Traffic Department


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