The Delhi Traffic Police's tall claims of ensuring smooth traffic during the Commonwealth Games seem to be falling flat.
Sample this: Out of 153 new traffic lights to be installed at various junctions, mostly in central Delhi and close to Games venues by August-end, only 34 lights are functional.
The department had earlier identified old and faulty signal systems to be replaced immediately. It was announced that Delhiites will get a R200-crore intelligent traffic system before the Commonwealth Games.
The system was to be installed at 275 places across the city to help tackle traffic congestion. However, with just 19 days more to go for the international sporting event, as many as 119 lights are either yet to be installed or not functioning.
Also, around 85 existing traffic lights in the city are in a non-functional state.
The Delhi Traffic Police, which has completed only 20 per cent of the work in the past six months, is not ready to admit its failure. It said the department would try to finish the work by month-end, only if rains don't create any more problems.
"According to Met department, rains will be over in a couple of days. After that remaining work will be completed," said Ajay Chadha, Special CP (Traffic), who admitted that the department failed to meet its August-end deadline.
The department has missed the deadline twice. The first work order was issued in April, where 76 signals, including 36 on the Games lanes, were scheduled to be in place by July. A second work order was issued with an expansion of the work volume. This time, the deadline was extended till August.
"But our department failed to complete even half the work that was assigned in the first work order," a senior officer said.