12 nightmare spots on S Delhi’s link road to NCR
HT drives down the Mehrauli-Badarpur Road during peak hours to identify the choke points that turn this key stretch into a traffic nightmare for commutersdelhi Updated: Feb 26, 2016 15:12 IST
Travelling on the 12 kilometre-long Mehrauli-Badarpur (MB) Road — from Badarpur to Aurobindo Marg — can be a driver’s worst nightmare. Traffic always crawls on this important road that connects Delhi with NCR (Gurgaon, Faridabad and Noida) irrespective of the time of the day. Potholes, encroachments and poor road design have all contributed to the mess. Container depot in Tughlaqabad also leads to unauthorised parking of trucks on the way up to Badarpur. Thus, it takes an hour and a half to cover the distance which shouldn’t take more than 20-25 min.
HT south Delhi drove on this road on Saturday during evening hours to take stock of the bottlenecks and hurdles along this stretch.
1. BADARPUR CROSSING (STARTING TIME 5.30PM)
At least one lakh vehicles take Badarpur crossing every day. For residents of Faridabad, this crossing is the only direct link to the Capital. With heavy traffic load and encroachments, the average waiting time at the crossing to enter Delhi is 30 min which increases at night because commercial traffic moves on NH-2 then. Parked autorickshaws and RTVs shrink the road available for movement of vehicle near Badarpur Metro station.
2. SURAJKUND CROSSING (5.50PM, 2.5KM)
The traffic signal manages traffic from Surajkund road, Prahaladpur road and Lal Kuan. It is surrounded by densely populated areas like Prahladpur Village, Vishwakarma Colony and remains messed up most of the time. A number of shops and and makeshift stalls that extend till the main road cause a major hassle to the traffic movement.
3. TUGHLAQABAD FORT (6pm, 2km)
About 100m patch opposite Tughlaqabad fort caved in a few months back because of a damaged trunk line. The repair work is still on and only single lane is available for traffic movement. It takes about 15m to cross the patch during peak hours. The extended entrance wall of the fort (on one side)just before the traffic signal is another hurdle. Heavy duty machines to carry out repair work are still stationed here.
4. SANGAM VIHAR T-POINT (6.15PM, 2.5KM)
This is the worst affected part of the poorly managed MB Road. Pedestrians have to cut across vehicles. This causes complete chaos. The T-point connecting Sangam Vihar, Kalkaji and Batra Hospital remains chock-a-block. There is a dhalao in front of the government hospital which squeezes the road width. In front of the dhalao, autos, buses and rickshaws can be seen parked in rows.
5. BATRA HOSPITAL FOB (6.20PM, 0.5KM)
Gramin Sewas and autorickshaws are always parked near the foot overbridge leaving only a single-lane space for vehicles to move. The FOB connects the road to the hospital. During peak hours both sides of the road are jam-packed because of heavy encroachments by temporary food stall owners, Gramin Sewa drivers and autorickshaws waiting for passengers. Most of these commercial wait for passengers adding to the chaos.
6. VAYUSENABAD (AIR FORCE STATION) (6.25PM, 0.5KM)
The half a kilometre stretch is damaged and riddled with potholes. The drainage system also doesn’t function properly and during monsoon, it gets waterlogged resulting in traffic jams. The traffic police have written to the PWD and the agency proposed to install a pump here to clear the water. But nothing has happened so far.
7. KHANPUR EXTENSION T-POINT (6.30PM, 1KM)
Both sides of the road have been reduced to single lanes due to massive encroachments done by people living in the neighbourhood. Shopkeepers have extended their shops on the road. Unauthorised parking of trucks and mini buses add to the mess. The traffic coming from Khanpur village and Khanpur extension also merges at this point increasing the burden on road.
8. DEOLI VILLAGE (6.35, 0.2KM)
A number of Gramin Sewas are parked on both sides of the road to pick and drop passengers. Fruit-sellers have also encroached the road and like at other points only single lane is available for traffic movement.
9. AMBEDKAR NAGAR DEPOT (6.40PM, 0.3KM)
There is a dhalao next to the depot. The spilling garbage here covers one fourth of the road and invites cows and stray animals who block the road. The traffic moves at a snail’s pace and buses from the depot are often parked outside on the main road. As these animals move in herds, they further obstruct the traffic flow.
10. BRT CROSSING (6.48PM, 1KM)
The bus stop in the middle of BRT used to disrupt the traffic flow. Moreover, those who had to take a left turn towards Sheikh Sarai would get stuck in jams. However, with the BRT being dismantled, the debris on the road now interrupts the traffic movement. Adding to the mess, those who have to go towards Sainik Farms have to take an unscheduled U-turn at the traffic signal. The traffic police have demanded a U-turn, but no initiative has been taken..
11. ASIAN MARKET (6.50PM, 0.5KM)
The place is the starting point for cluster buses, so these are parked here most of the time reducing the four-lane road to two lanes for traffic movement. Traffic cops claim they have written to the DTC to shift the bus shelter from here and ensure that the buses are stationed at the Ambedkar Nagar Depot.
12. IGNOU ROAD T-POINT (7PM, 1KM)
From Saidulajab foot overbridge till the Saket Metro Station, traffic moves at slow speed. Vehicles get stuck at this point for about 10 min as vehicles from IGNOU and internal roads of Saidulajab merge into the main traffic (coming from Sainik Farms and Khanpur) and cause severe blockage. Pedestrians cross the road in the middle of the traffic despite having a provision for FOB and this restricts smooth movement of traffic.
PLANS TO DECONGEST MB ROAD
The six-laned MB Road, whose upkeep was transferred from MCD to PWD in April 2004, connects NH-2 at Badarpur to Aurobindo Marg near Qutab Minar. In December 2015, the traffic police shared a list of 55 roads in the city which are prone to traffic jams with the ministry of home affairs, and MB road was one of the roads. In the report, it was stated that Delhi Police was regulating traffic, enforcing rules and educating road users with an objective to provide safe and smooth flow of traffic. However, nothing of that sort happened on the ground. Harendra Singh, DCP, Traffic (south) said, “We have written to the DTC, PWD and MCD to shift dhalaos, cluster bus kiosks, remove encroachments and improve the condition of the road.”
In 2014, the Delhi government had planned to construct an elevated road, a series of flyovers and a tunnel to decongest MB Road. As per the scheme, PWD was planning to construct an elevated corridor at Khanpur and a tunnel was proposed at Tughlaqabad because of the existence of historic 13th century Tughlaqabad fort. MK Mallick, superintending engineer, PWD said, “The proposal to decongest the stretch is currently with Unified Traffic and Transportation Infrastructure (Planning and Engineering) Centre, which includes a double decker flyover (1.5km long) near Deoli Village and an underpass near Tughlakabad Fort. We need a No Objection Certificate from ASI for its construction.”
Due to the parking of vehicles and rickshaws in front of the dhalao at Sangam Vihar crossing, bus passengers have to wait on the road to catch a bus. Also, there is a U-turn before the traffic signal, which is often misused by commuters who drive on the wrong side.
Namit Gupta, a resident, Sangam Vihar
There is no U-turn for those coming from Mehrauli and going towards Khanpur Gate (near Sainik farms). As a result, those who take a U-turn at the signal have to protect themselves from the fast moving traffic from Badarpur which is very risky. There should be a provision of a U-turn here.
Sushil Kumar, a resident of Sanik Farms
My office is in Sector 27, Faridabad and I have to drive through the toll plaza on daily basis from Lado Sarai. During peak hours traffic moves at a snail’s pace, so one has to keep extra time in hand to reach office in time.
Akhilesh Gupta, resident of Lado Sarai
The condition of the road is pathetic and it is damaged at many places and this has been the situation for a long time. It is difficult to understand why the authority is not taking any action to repair the stretch for smooth flow of traffic.
Rakhi Dikshit, resident of Malviya Nagar