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GIS map project gathers dust, officials try excavation

Vadodara, India: Engineers working on Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) projects are finding it difficult to get a precise idea about the underground network of different installations including drinking water, drainage, gas and even communication cables. Of late, development work is going on in almost every part of the city.

The Vadodara Municipal Corporation (VMC) had initiated an ambitious project to put the entire underground network on a map, using the Geographical Information System (GIS). But the project never saw light of the day and the files are now gathering dust at the VMC headquarters at Khanderao Market.

Senior officials earlier involved in the project said it was only because of certain basic formalities, which the VMC failed to do, that the project could not kick off.

“The project aimed to create a system, which would come in handy whenever an excavation work is planned. Had the project materialised, it would have been easier to implement any project without bothering about the damage to any of the underground installations. We had even done a pilot project in one of the city wards in 1997, and the maps are still there at the VMC office,” said Alpesh Majmudar, Executive Engineer (Road Projects).

The VMC was supposed to take permission from the Geological Survey of India and use aerial photography after taking necessary permission from the state government, which coordinates with all municipal corporations and other government bodies, to prepare a base map.