Traffic mess on roads leads the population to frustration, while traveling to anywhere in cities or towns the mess of traffic on roads frustrate travelers. Traffic movement on roads is increasing with each passing day. The vehicular movement on roads is proportional to population, that is; traffic increases with the increase in population. There is hardly anyone, who has not seen jams. Most of us experience this while traveling in Srinagar (the summer capital of state J&K), and we blame traffic police for everything but it is not like that. They cannot be blamed for everything. People are also responsible for these issues. When we cannot correct ourselves, how can we expect everything to be corrected by others? While traveling from South Kashmir to Srinagar, I have many times been stuck at Pantha Chowk. Most of the people complain about the traffic congestion at this place. Not only common people but also once Anil Ambani has got stuck for half an hour at same place, which forced him to cancel his trip to Pahalgam. While traveling in cities and towns one can easily find the common people and responsible persons behind traffic jams.
Main reasons behind traffic jams
Street vendors:- Most of the times the traffic jam starts due to the street vendors who keep their carts on roadsides. The vendors occupy some space on roads, but their costumers occupy half of the roads, which become barriers to traffic movement. In many places, Street vendors occupy the footpaths forcing pedestrians to move on roads.
Wrong Parking: – Most of the people who go to cities or towns for shopping, travel by personal vehicles, for them they had to either keep their vehicle in parking zone or somewhere where it doesn’t make hindrance for others. What happens is that most of them keep their vehicles on busy roadsides, which leads to narrowness of road, and in this way, it disturbs smooth vehicular movement. Either they have to keep there vehicles in parking zone, or if you think that you are traveling such a location where there is no parking zone do not travel in your personal vehicle. In this regard, Traffic department must be careful, as Many times the drivers could not see the parking zones; it is the responsibility of authorities to install signboards so that it is easy to find the parking zones. In the crowded towns and cities, one can see the vehicles parked on either sides of the road, which also leads to narrowness of the roads. It is our responsibility to park our vehicles in parking slots. Authorities must wake up from deep slumber to take strict action against them for parking vehicles on busy roads. Army convoys make sure that their convoys pass without any hurdles, they adopt hard rules, and their service must be taken to reduce the mess. We are living in 21st century everything has changed now. If, we go back to past , population of the Srinagar city was some 2-3 lacks, and at that time, traffic was few hundred vehicles. Now it is almost 15 lack population and obviously the vehicular number has also increased to lacks (291415 vehicles have been registered up to march 2017, according to Motor Vehicles Department J&K). While as, in whole J&K the vehicles registered up to March 2017 are 1488190. Now to make smooth vehicular movement in cities and towns it is need of hour to expand the roads. It seems easy to get license to drive a vehicle, you just need to have some good resources, or we can see Nepotism also rules here in getting license for those who do not qualify the criteria.
If authorities giving license to those only who can pass formalities, this can be a good factorin reducing the traffic congestion on roads. Pertinently, J&K Traffic Police department has registered about 379521 challans in this year upto September; including 48469 as court challans and 331052 compound challans. While as in 2016 the number of challans was 662930. Including 64610 court challans and 598320 compound challans. These challans has been done at different units in J&K as, Traffic City Srinagar, Traffic Rural Kashmir, Traffic City Jammu, Traffic Rural Jammu, and Traffic NHW (J&K Traffic Police Website).
Conclusion: – Once, the authorities make it strict towards all the violators who are violating rules then there will be a good change in this mess. Whosoever is found violating rules should be fined with high amount or should be dragged to court with a remarkable punishment, so that in future he will learn a lesson. At every crossing, a policemen should be stationed, as many vehicles try themselves to cross at wrong places, which leads to traffic jams. Matador drivers should be directed to stop at selected places, for them bus tops do not exist, they drive there matadors at their will. They should be fined for stopping at unauthorized stops, and a speed bar should be given to them for driving matadors and buses. Street vendors should be give particular area where they can keep the stall. No street vendor should be allowed to keep his stall on road.
Author is Pursuing Diploma in Mechanical Engineering and is Executive Member of All Jammu and Kashmir Students Union(AJKSU). He tweets at @younsrashid