Within 24 hours of the fatal mishap on Behala Chowrasta, the South 24-Parganas traffic police have cracked the whip on auto-rickshaw and bus operators. However, they had to face resistance while relocating the auto stand and bus stop.
On Thursday, Rabin Ghosh, a 50-year-old employee of BSNL, was run over by a private bus while he was waiting at the bus stop with wife Subhadra.
On the Chowrasta, auto operators wait for passengers right at the four-point intersection, causing a serious traffic snarl.
Moreover, buses that turn towards Biren Roy Road (West) also stop at the intersection to pick up passengers. As a result, the crossing has become a death trap. A number of accidents have taken place and pedestrians are often wary of crossing the road.
Deputy superintendent of police (traffic) Shakil Ahmed said on Friday: “Some auto drivers tried to obstruct us but we succeeded in relocating their stand.”
From Friday, autos will be parked near Janakalyan, which is a stone’s throw away from the Chowrasta crossing. Similarly, bus operators intending to enter Biren Roy Road (West) have been told not to stop in front of the UTI bank. Some portions of the road are in bad shape and the PWD has been asked to repair it.
Ahmed said that after Thursday’s accident, the officer on duty on the spot has been replaced.
The traffic police strength has also been beefed up. Earlier, there were six policemen under a single officer; now, the number is eight. In addition, two constables will be on vigil to see that no auto driver parks his vehicle at the Chowrasta intersection.
The Behala police have asked the owner of the killer bus to pay compensation to Ghosh’s family. The family will be awarded compensation from the government, as per rules.
Deputy superintendent Ahmed spoke of plans to relocate the hawkers from the roads of Behala. “There are many vendors on the footpaths of Chowrasta, Sakher Bazar, Silpara and near Behala tram depot. They are obstructing traffic and pedestrian movement. However, we need active participation of the area’s residents and political parties to evict them,” Ahmed said.