| A snarl on Gautam Buddha Road in Gaya. Picture by Suman |
A plan to streamline traffic on the arterial roads of the township is in place but cannot be implemented for the alleged delay in setting up signage by the civic body.
The result: residents can neither go for a smooth drive nor enjoy a free walk on thoroughfares such as Gautam Buddha Road, KP Road, Tekari Road and Chowk Road.
Vehicles wait in serpentine queues for hours and encroachers outnumber pedestrians on most of these roads.
Gaya Sadar sub-divisional officer (SDO) Paritosh Kumar said: “The plan to regulate traffic is ready but cannot be implemented because of the delay on part of the Gaya Municipal Corporation (GMC) to install signage identifying parking and no-parking zones along the roads.”
GMC deputy mayor Akhauri Onkarnath, alias Mohan Shrivastava, however, said that auction for the parking zones would be held in the 2013-14 financial year. “According to the government announcement, the GMC will have its own force that will enforce the traffic regulations in the township. The bidders will also appoint people at the parking zones to collect fee from vehicle owners. The GMC has already set up signage in some areas. We will complete the work in the rest of the areas soon.”
According to the traffic regulation plan, Bajaja Road in front of the head post office and the eastern road of the zilla school have been identified for parking of two-wheelers. KP Road has been identified for parking of both two and four-wheelers, while the southern road of Pilgrim Hospital has been earmarked only for four wheelers.
There is also a plan to depute employees to ensure a systematic parking system and realise parking fee. Once the parking system is developed, strict measures will be adopted to ensure that no vehicle is parked on the main roads. “We are also planning to remove the encroachment that causes traffic congestion,” the SDO said.
District transport office statistics reveal that around 17,963 vehicles, including 13,867 two-wheelers, got registered in the 2010-11 financial year. In 2009-10 and 2008-09 financial years, 14,855 vehicles, including 9,961 two-wheelers, and 12,119 vehicles, including 9,098 two-wheelers, were registered, respectively. District transport officer Surendra Jha said in view of the increasing number of vehicles in the town, strict measures have been adopted for traffic regulation. “This includes ban on entry of heavy vehicles in the township area between 9am and 9pm,” he added.
The biggest challenge facing the administration in the township is to get free the roads of encroachers. The situation in the GB Road area is worst, as there is virtually no parking space on the thoroughfare. Around 300m of GB Road has been utilised for construction of footpath from the stretch between the head post office and Chhatta Masjid. The width of the footpath is nearly 10ft and height 1ft.
Gaya MP Hari Manjhi has in a letter to the Magadh division commissioner said the footpath, instead of facilitating the pedestrians, “is being used by vendors”.