Six months after the Ghaziabad police had constituted a special task force to streamline the humongous traffic issue of Indirapuram following the order from the Allahabad High Court, the situation on the ground seems to have worsened.
This is the allegation made by the Federation of Apartments Owners Association (FedAOA) who had filed the public interest litigation (PIL), after which the court had passed the order.
On October 24, 2018, the High Court had directed SSP of Ghaziabad to constitute a special task force to manage the traffic in the locality. Six months after the judgement, the reply to RTI filed by FedAOA revealed that the police administration had taken several initiatives to curb the traffic menace. But the impact of the initiatives remains questionable.
In January this year, FedAOA had filed an RTI questioning the steps taken by the police administration in compliance to the court’s order. In a reply given after five months, the police claimed to have issued 9,627 challans between November 2018 and March 2019.
“Penalties worth Rs 7,16,600 were received from the violations,” the reply read adding that four fighter vehicles (quick response teams of Ghaziabad traffic police) were assigned to manage and control the traffic in Indirapuram.
The reply further elaborated that the special task force – comprising of SP Traffic and ACP of Indirapuram – regularly briefs traffic officials and fighter teams assigned to manage smooth movement of the traffic in the locality.
“The impact of all these steps taken to improve the ground reality is close to zero. The traffic is increasing day by day while the administration is busy claiming the benefits of steps taken," said Alok Kumar, president of FedAOA and petitioner of the PIL.
City Spidey spoke to ACP Aparna Gautam, a member of the special task force, about the real impact of the claims made by police. “Things will take time,” she said acknowledging the questionable impact of the steps taken by the police.
“However, we are making all the efforts keeping in view the limited human resources of our department and high population of the city. We are bringing changes in our operations to ensure effectiveness. Recently, we had switched from manual to electronic challan system. This way, challans are being done faster and at more effective rate. Such changes are being introduced and things will take time to improve; they cannot change overnight," she replied.
Gautam also complained about uncivilized behaviour of the residents which adds to the challanges. "People drive on the wrong side, without helmets and park their vehicles on the road. We challan such offenders everyday but that does not seem to be acting as a deterrent. A better civic sense and behaviour of a responsible citizen should prevail," Gautam added.