Think twice before you blame the traffic signal for being too slow at the infamous BRT corridor in south Delhi.
A video and a series of pictures posted on Saturday by a citizen on Delhi Traffic Police's Facebook page reveal a nexus between traffic signal operators and Blueline bus drivers on the BRT at GK-I intersection.
"I take that stretch once a week and have been following this drama for two months now. I got the hint a week ago when I saw a group of men assembled in front of the signal operation box and discussing Blueline bus timings — essentially which one was running late and which one on time," Amit Raj Gulati who posted the matter on the page told Hindustan Times.
The pictures and video show a person operating the traffic signal taking instructions from a person in casual clothes standing at a distance.
"The person instructing the man operating the signal is carefully checking numbers of the Blueline buses approaching from the opposite side. When he sees a particular bus approach, he instructs that the light be turned green. The pictures were taken first and the video was shot 15 days later — the same duo are at their business in both," Gulati said.
The Delhi Traffic Police concurred.
"The man operating the signal is a Delhi Integrated Multi-Modal Transit System (DIMTS) employee and visibly in connivance with the man in the green t-shirt," said a senior Delhi Traffic Police officer requesting anonymity.
Ajay Chadha, Special CP (Traffic) said, "I've seen the video and the pictures that have been posted and alerted the zonal officers concerned."
The traffic signal system on the BRT corridor is managed by the DIMTS. Delhi Traffic Police provides additional support as and when required.
"This is a routine affair on the BRT. Blueline bus conductors approach such touts and pay them a small fee to avoid getting stuck. This is an elaborate racket," the officer said.
A DIMTS employee, Prithviraj Chauhan, manning a similar traffic intersection in southeast Delhi's Pushp Vihar area was suspended in early August for the same offence.
The Managing Director of DIMTS, Sanjiv Sahai, could not be reached for comment despite repeated attempts.