ON THE WRONG SIDE – On Pimple Saudagar roads, violation of rules rampant

Children’s Safety Takes A Backseat
A week ago, Deepak Gangurde had a narrow escape while going home at night. He almost crashed into a motorcyclist coming in the wrong direction.Recalling the close shave, Pimple Saudagar resident said: “The biker, riding on the wrong side, appeared suddenly in front of my car when I was going towards Hotel Govind Garden chowk from Swaraj Garden chowk. The biker was obscured by a parked bus. I managed to apply brakes during which time the biker sped away .“

Motorists on the Nashik Phata-Wakad BRTS road seem especially oblivious to the rules which were imposed for their own safety . With little regard for others’ -or their own -safety , they engage in flagrant violation of directional rules. This is a 45m wide road, with two dedicated bus lanes in the centre. There are three-lane service roads on either side for other vehicular traffic. Along both sides of the road as well as off it, there are several housing societies. It is the residents of these societies that are frequent violaters.

“Not just two-wheelers, but also call centres’ cabs drive on the wrong side while going from Govind chowk to Manisha, Satellite and Ganesham housing societies,“ Gangurde added. “ A few two-wheelers also drive on footpath while going on the wrong side, endangering pedestrians.“

In a few instances, even women with little kids on the pillion were seen recklessly riding on the wrong side.

The problem is especially acute on the stretch of road between PK International school chowk in Pimple Saudgar and Jagtap Dairy chowk. Instead of taking a U-turn at the chowk ahead of PK International School, motorists coming from Kokane chowk try save a few seconds and metres by cutting across oncoming traffic to go to the other side.

Businessman Balvinder Singh said, “If residents of housing societies along Kunal IconDwarkadheesh road want to go to the shopping mall near Shivar chowk, they ideally should travel almost a kilometre and take a U-turn at Jagtap Dairy chowk. Instead, many just take the easy way out.“

Shantanu Prabhune, a busi nessman, recounts an incident where he had a brush with death. “I escaped certain death a fortnight ago. Around 8am, I was out running with a friend.We were crossing Jagtap Dairy chowk when I my friend shout out a warning. Just as I stopped, a school bus hurtled past, a hair’s breadth away . Had I been even one step ahead, I would been crushed. The bus driver did not even stop. Through his reckless driving, the driver put not only my life in danger, but also the lives of several innocent school children.“

“Another bad spot is the stretch of BRT road from Govind Garden chowk to Gold Gym, going towards Nashik phata. Here, school vans, fourwheelers, rickshaws and twowheelers are seen regularly driving on the wrong side. I try to tell them not to do so, but it makes no difference. People need to follow traffic rules and have discipline to prevent accidents,“ Prabhune added.

Another resident, Milind Mahajan, chimed in. “The Kunal Icon-Shivar chowk road is very narrow, so there is no scope for a road divider. As a result, there is no segregation of vehicular traffic, and people take advantage of it and drive recklessly. Sooner or later, there will be a major accident due to this,“ Mahajan said.

In fact, according to everyone TOI spoke to, traffic personnel are deployed only at Jagtap Dairy chowk on the BRTS road.They say police also need to be deployed at other chowks on the road.

Kishore Mhaswade, senior police inspector of the Sangvi traffic division, said the police are on the matter. “We have deployed two policemen and one traffic warden at Shivar chowk and one warden at Kokane chowk. We are carrying out a daily drive against traffic rule violators in Pimple Saudagar.We will take down the mobile numbers of offenders, and send challans to their homes,“ Mhaswade said.

Source : TOI