Frequent traffic jams on Valley roads irk commuters


Srinagar—Massive traffic jams on major roads of the Valley, especially in Srinagar city are causing immense hardships to commuters.

Commuters allege that Regional transport offices (RTO), Assistant Regional transport offices (ARTO), spread over entire J&K state have failed to devise a strategy to deal with the crisis

“These offices have been designated for a particular cause which has a constitution to bring about the progress in the total traffic management system and to implement these rules, but it seems that there has been absolute failure in the implementation of such laid laws, rules and procedures, said a  social activist.

Commuters allege that traffic jams have become a everyday’s headache. “It seems that office of the ARTO’s across the state are busy in issuing driving licenses, where one would find long queues. Even the traffic police have also become a mute spectators which results in fatal accidents within city and on national highways also,” said one of the senior residents of Srinagar city.

The records compiled by NRSC say that more than one thousand people die in the state every year in road mishaps in which around 50% die due to speeding and most of them by the commercial vehicles.

The experts say that there are number of instances where major accidents take place by the cause of overloading in the commercial buses and matadors which kill thousands of people and go unnoticed. “No attention on this account has ever been taken on the highways, which always remain in news for such fatal accidents,”

“There has been a huge provision in the budget for organizing awareness camps through traffic weeks, but has there ever been a change which took place with such awareness camps and traffic weeks, said one of the observers.

The observers say that these traffic weeks organized by traffic police in collaboration with RTO’s and civil societies are limited to ribbon cuttings.

One of the experts was of the view that like in the foreign countries where it is mandatory for educational institutions to teach the basics of traffic rules along with the primary studies, education department should include one of the primary subjects of the traffic management system so that children get fully aware at a very early age.

One of the traffic police officials on condition of anonymity admitted that the traffic situation in the state has become chaotic. “Our duty is not just to collect fines from law-breakers, but the primary responsibility of the police is to regulate the traffic. The task has become very difficult because of those who violate traffic rules,” he said and added that signal jumping, halting on zebra crossings, talking on cell phones while driving/riding, driving and parking on the footpaths, haphazardly parking vehicles, and rash and negligent driving are some of the most common offenses.

He said that there are so many who break traffic rules blatantly and with no regard for other road users. They show no concern for other road users or pedestrians. (KNS)

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