Time to reclaim Mumbai streets

April 12th, 2007

Most true-blue Mumbaikars would hate to learn manners from Delhi. And yet, the agenda on traffic orderliness is being set in the capital, while Mumbai transforms from a civil road-people to a bunch of reckless signal-crashers and cellchatters.

In contrast to Mumbai’s wishywashy penalties, Delhi has kept it simple — make people pay dearly for nonsense. While the minimum fine there now is Rs 600 and your licence is seized after being punched for three offences, in Mumbai the fine is a measly Rs 100, without a bruise to the licence.

Considering Mumbai has 600650 road-accident deaths every year, many feel it is time that the city took lessons from Delhi. After all, the city’s vehicular density is 591 vehicles per km, as against the international standard of 300 vehicles per km.

“I think there is a greater need to launch a sustained drive in Mumbai. Motorists here have no regard for pedestrians and violate every law. The traffic police may have their problems, but if there is a continuous drive, motorists will eventually learn to respect the law,” said S. Sriraman, professor of transport economics, University of Mumbai.

And despite having 15 lakh vehicles and lakhs of traffic violations annually, Mumbai does not have its traffic data digitised. This is helping violators escape fines for their subsequent offences as there is simply no archival record of any violations, unlike in Delhi where traffic licences and data are digitised and archived.

Traffic Violations in Mumbai

JAN-DEC 2006

Cases…………. 18.53 lakh

Fine collected….. Rs 14.7 crore

JAN-Mar 2007

Cases…………. 5.29 lakh

Fine collected….. Rs 4.37 crore

Source: Hindustantimes (epaper)

Entry Filed under: Mumbai Traffic News

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