ON THE WRONG SIDE – On MG Road, age no barrier for defiant rule breakers

Some Argue, Even Threaten Complainants
Cautioning someone, in particular the middle-aged motorists, moving along the wrong side of MG Road on their two-wheelers, can spell trouble. In fact, a number of people, largely local shopkeepers, have faced snarling riders first-hand.“I don’t understand why people cannot abide by basic traffic rules. Only a week ago, two middle-aged men were on their two-wheelers riding on the wrong end of the road in the evening when there is increased traffic. Moreover, since it was a Saturday , their act resulted in a major traffic jam near Aurora Towers. It just continued to get worse. Suddenly , upon spotting a police vehicle, the men got desperate and they tried hard to find a parking space. When they didn’t find any other spot, they parked their vehicles in front of my shop haphazardly . Just as I confronted them about the problems they had caused, they threatened me. They asked me to be quiet and used foul language,“ shared Akash Inarkar, who owns a gift shop on MG Road.

As for the motorists, a man driving in the wrong direction on MG Road, seemed entirely nonchalant about his decision.“Chalta hai! Why should I take a long route when its such a short distance? Everyone does it,“ he said, before driving awauone of them said looking upset as they drove away.

As one moves through the busy thoroughfare, which is popular for street shopping and its eateries, many motorists are seen driving on the wrong side, sometimes speeding without caring about the dangers they pose to others as well as themselves.

“It creates a lot of problems, mainly traffic jams. We are tired of seeing this phenomenon. Things had improved sometime back but now again it is back to square one. The entire road is a one-way for traffic from the Kondhwa-end, that is, after crossing the Lulla Nagar junction and moving straight until Aurora Towers. The scene only worsens during the late evening hours,“ Tariq Sheikh, a local resident.

Pawan Dhanawat, a street vendor, recalls a bad experien ce that left him shocked and terrified. “Nearly a month ago, as I was moving by the side of the road, a motorist travelling on the wrong side of the road hit me. When I protested, he just asked me to wait for him to return. However, after half-anhour, I saw the duo with five more men moving along the pavements, searching for me. I immediately fled the area.Wrong side driving is rampant and the cops are active only during the weekends, that too in the evening hours. On other days, no one bothers,“ Dhanawat said.

With makeshift stalls selling different wares already having encroached upon the pavements, the problem of wrong side driving worsens the conditions, local residents pointed out.

“I have seen people driving on the wrong side of the road to reach a shop or restaurant located only a few meters away .MG Road has designated parking areas. Even so, motorists don’t park their vehicles and walk the distance. Walking on the road along with my five-year-old son, while dodging vehicles speeding on the wrong side, is almost impossible. The motorists don’t even care and remain unapologetic,“ said Sakshi Sinha, a local resident.

Source : TOI