The Delhi Traffic Police’s third day of decongestion drive to remove rickshaws and hand-pulled carts from Chandni Chowk on Friday got a mixed response.
While the traders welcomed the drive, saying such initiatives were long over due, shoppers were not too happy.
“This is the easiest way to move around. Why did they have to remove the rickshaws,” asked Jyoti Prakash, who had come for shopping.
The traffic police officials said CNG-run mini-buses had been provided as an alternative and people were free to bring their personal vehicles in the area.
Special commissioner of police (Traffic) Ajay Chadha said: “At present, we are now concentrating on regulation and not prosecution of the errant rickshaws. If needed, we will start prosecuting them once the Rickshaw Act is in place.”
Satyendra Garg, joint commissioner of police (Traffic) said the roads included in the drive are Chandni Chowk Road, Ramchandra Dahlvi Marg, Church Mission Road, Shanti Desai Marg and H.C. Sen Marg.
“A recent high court judgment has made it clear that the ban on the use of cycle rickshaws on arterial roads was not illegal. I have requested the joint commissioner of police (Traffic) to put up some boards on Chandni Chawk road prohibiting rickshaws and hand-drawn carts,” said Sanjay Bhargava, general secretary, Chandni Chawk Sarv Vyapar Mandal.
But all are not impressed with this drive. Madhu Kishwar, senior fellow at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, said, “Where else will the rickshaws ply if not in Chandni Chowk?”