Traffic to a website is considered to be good. No matter how it is acquired through referrals, organic or direct. But when it comes to traffic on roads, the story changes completely. Rightly so, traffic jams are a common site in both developed and developing countries. What differentiates the traffic in developed and developing countries is the way the citizen behave when faced by traffic. The way the police and other elements act when such situations arise is really what makes the difference when you compare the two countries. Traffic jams are no good for sure, it takes a lot of time out of a person’s life, they tire you out. Also they reduce the productivity of an individual which in turn affects his organisation then eventually the economy of the country gets effected. It’s a chain reactions you see.
We also waste a lot of our non-renewable energy resources, just by standing in traffic jams which many don’t talk about.
Delhi faces immense traffic. You just can’t predict where the next jam is going to be. And more interestingly when you come out of a jam you many a times realise that the jam was caused because of a very minor and stupid reason. Surprisingly, the whole of the Central Delhi area where the MP’s live is excellently managed and that too with many traffic lights. I personally have only encountered one jam there in my life and that too was because of some VIP movement. Many media houses and others say that the jams are because of the number of vehicle is too much for Delhi to take, they may be partially right but there has to be a solution for the increased vehicles being registered here or even for commercial or passing by cars such that the commute isn’t hit this badly.
I’m sure the officials would be working very hard to counter this common problem. The problem is only going to increase as sales of automobile is only going to grow. And the passenger car segment too is in a boom thanks to the revived Maruti Suzuki strategy. Also many automobile manufacturers are in line to enter India in the next few years. I have thought of few suggestions which are a bit capital-intensive, but if implemented the scenes could improve drastically. The solutions can be applied to other cities too, but I have kept Delhi as focus since I’m aware of the situation here as I face them regularly.
the Jugaad Way!
Well, getting a driving license is not at a difficult task here in Delhi. You can get it without even going through the test. Yes, we follow the JUGAAD way. To add to it the Learners test is really easy to crack you just need to get 6/10 answers right. Compare this process to that followed in countries like UK and even in UAE. The process itself is very expensive, over that the exam both written and practical are of some standards. Whereas in Delhi, the people want to go the Jugaad way and to those who don’t pass both the Learner’s as well as the practical quite easily without much difficulty. This basically means the drivers out there have not gained enough knowledge about the rules and regulations and hence take driving for granted. Breaking rules very frequently without much personal implications.
The transport department must increase the difficulty level of such exams, so that the people who get through value the license and rules. Yes, definitely actions must be taken to stop the JUGAAD in license issuing.
Potholes and Traffic Lights
They say in Delhi “Pothole don’t exists on roads rather Roads exist on potholes” meaning there are way too many potholes for our liking. Again I don’t find any potholes in Central Delhi, why so is it just because MP’s live there? The common man who commutes daily deserves such roads don’t they? The potholes reduce the average speed of a road, hence piling up the traffic. Potholes are mainly caused after the rain, that is because the contractor doesn’t lay the road from scratch instead he just keep adding road on top of road. This causes air bubbles and eventually waters seeps through the layer causing erosion. Laying from scratch is expensive but it will surely ensure that you dot need to repair those roads again for some years.
Malfunctioning of Traffic lights in Delhi is another common sight. The problem after such a situation is everyone wants to go first nobody wants to wait. This causes a lot of confusion and hence severe jams. Our systems needs to be so active that if a traffic light has gone bad the maintenance team should get to work immediately and a message should be floated immediately to the nearest traffic office so that an officer can keep the traffic to run smoothly.
Yes, the more intersection lesser coordination among the drivers, hence slowing traffic and eventually jams. Roads need to be as much intersection free as possible. And Delhi has too many intersections and on top of that intersections are even manufactured on daily basis by our very talented motorists, i.e through the dividers.
The video below explains the role of intersections in traffic:
Technology Enabled Policing
It’s high time for our police departments to invest heavily on technology based trafficking. Yes, they’ve made starts by launching apps and being accessible on WhatsApp. But I think there needs to be solutions for which our current traffic policemen need to be more qualified in terms of technology. CCTV’s can be installed in most areas to detect violation of traffic just like in many countries. Police men don’t need to be present to issue a challan everywhere, they can be put to use in other ways. There can be many solutions for law violations like Pollution and Insurance expiry tracking through online modes. There can be many solutions which can be solved using up to date technology it’s about the will to apply them.
E-Rickshaws/ Vikrams/DTC buses
Yes, E-rickshaws are less polluting comparatively, yes they provide employment for many. But I feel there are too many both E-rickshaws & Vikrams. They simply cause a lot of nuisance in the city. Traffic signals are broken, rash driving, driving into the smallest gaps available all this contributes heavily to traffic jams specially in residential areas. There needs to be some solid solution to manage them and that too soon, because the number of E-rickshaws are increasing thanks to the subsidy Mr. Kejriwal is giving on them.
The above mentioned reasons of law violations can be used for DTC buses as well. I’ve personally seen the bus drivers speeding to overtake one another. To add to it they tend to stop just few millimetres away from other vehicles. Traffic signals is just another disco light for them. The drivers are government employees, the rules need to be followed by them so as to set an example.
Parking On Roads
This is another major source which causes a lot of havoc in the city. People park their vehicles in all weird places near markets just to cause a traffic jam. The police needs to be on lookout for such nasty car parking people. Sometimes the back of the car is just few millimetres outside the permitted space causing cars to not move. Markets need to have proper parking spaces and efficient people to manage those parking spaces.
If we read the rule books, Delhi has the one of the most strict rules possible for traffic violations. The fine imposed for voilation of traffic rules is very high. But the question is how many policemen actually are aware of the rules and how much of it is actually implemented. Implementation is a real problem because we surely have the rules for the violators.
More importantly we all must realise, we should from our own do the rights things. We can’t just blame the government and police for jams. It is we who violate the rules and then cry over traffic jams. Our will to do the right things when there are no policemen should supersede everything for better functioning of traffic. Yes, the above mentioned points need some discussion.
Do comment below if you think I’ve missed out any points which can improve traffic conditions in Delhi. Let’s try and make this post visible to our Officials who can act on the points.