| The College Square crossing in Cuttack. Picture by Badrika Nath Das |
Cuttack, April 15: Police are struggling to regulate vehicular traffic at major intersections as most of the digital traffic signalling systems are yet to be made operational in the city.
Though four digital traffic-signalling systems were installed at Dolamundai, Buxi Bazar, College Square and Bajrakabati road in 2009, the traffic officials are yet to initiate measures to turn the signals on.
It has been over four years and not a single digital traffic signalling system at these four prominent locations is functioning.
Sources said because of lack of infrastructure, planning, coordination and lack of adequate manpower, the electronic traffic signal posts erected at various locations are lying idle.
Besides, non-deployment of home guards and traffic personnel is also to be blamed for the disorganised traffic that is causing severe inconvenience to the commuters in Cuttack.
“Though the traffic signal at Bajrakabati was made operational, it was again closed down after a few months owing to acute congestion at the particular junction that was the converging point for vehicular traffic from Dolamundai, Saanta Sahi, Friends Colony, Kesharpur and Ranihat sides,” said Ashok Chaubey, a commuter.
The officials concerned installed the digital traffic signalling systems without conducting necessary groundwork. As a result, there is utter chaos at these unmanned junctions, Chaubey added.
Apart from Dolamundai, Buxi Bazar, College Square and Bajrakabati Road, digital traffic signalling systems that were also installed simultaneously at eight other prominent junctions including at Sikharpur, Madhupatna, Badambadi, Ranihat, Mangalabag, Chandi Chhak, Sati Choura and Khan Nagar are now functioning.
A private agency, Enkon, had installed the digital traffic signalling systems after an agreement was signed with officials of the Cuttack Municipal Corporation for advertisement rights at the junctions.
Similarly, the city police in 2011, had also mooted special plans for installation of new digital traffic signalling systems at four new places including Mani Mandir near Press Chhak, Rural District Police Officer’s Office, Mata Matha and Rotary Eye Hospital at Markat Nagar.
However, there has also been inordinate delay in executing such proposals that have led to resentment at various quarters.
Contacted, senior traffic officials on the other hand said that steps would be taken to rectify the problems at those junctions where digital traffic signalling systems have been installed.
“We will soon conduct a detail assessment of the problems for which the traffic signalling systems have not been made operational immediately after the conduct of the elections,” said assistant commissioner of police (traffic) Rajendra Rout.