A young professional on her way to office had just three kilometres left to travel on CR Avenue when her cab was forced to make a 14km detour around 2pm on Tuesday.
Another woman on her way home from work around 6.30pm took an hour, instead of the usual 15 minutes, to reach Moulali from Mullick Bazaar.
The city centre was choked for the second day on the trot on Wednesday as three organisations laid siege to different pockets of Esplanade, leading to bumper-to-bumper traffic on all adjacent thoroughfares.
An organisation affiliated to the SUCI took the lead, with around 2,000 members and supporters blocking traffic on both flanks of JL Nehru Road at the Dorina crossing for 90 minutes from 3pm.
Around the same time, 800-odd members of the Madarsa Education Workers’ Welfare Association held a rally on Rani Rashmoni Avenue, while a group under the banner of the Small Savings Agents Union gathered for a meeting in front of Yogayog Bhavan on CR Avenue.
“The SUCI rally ensured that there was no traffic movement on JL Nehru Road and SN Banerjee Road for 90 minutes. A long procession had come from College Square. When it reached Esplanade at 3pm, its tail was still at Raja Subodh Mullick Square,” said a sergeant posted at the Dorina crossing.
Huge snarls were reported from CR Avenue, JL Nehru Road, Esplanade East, SN Banerjee Road and Red Road. The disruption spread to other roads as the afternoon wore on and continued till late in the evening.
“Apart from the rallies, the ongoing beautification work on CR Avenue is responsible for the congestion,” said an officer at Lalbazar.
Anamika Chatterjee, who was on her way to her Chandni Chowk office from BT Road, reached CR Avenue smoothly at 1.15pm and then ran into an unending snarl. She took an hour flat to reach the Vivekananda Road crossing.
More was in store. Her cab was diverted left through Vivekananda Road when she was just 3km from her office. She was not allowed to take a right turn to BB Ganguly Road and was forced to head for APC Road.
After crossing the Sealdah flyover, she failed to enter a jam-packed Creek Row and SN Banerjee Road and could reach office via Shakespeare Sarani and Red Road at 4.15pm. The taxi fare the Khardah resident had to cough up? Rs 450.