A botched experiment by the Delhi-Gurgaon Express-way firm to end perennial traffic jams at the toll plaza turned commuting on the expressway — even on a lean day on account of Friday being Janmashtami, a holiday — a nightmare.
Peeved over unending traffic jams, the Punjab and Haryana high court on July 31 ordered the Delhi Gurgaon Super Connectivity Limited (DGSCL), the expressway firm, to set up 10 more toll collection booths by Friday.
But the firm went a step ahead and set up three booths each on 10 cash lanes at a distance of about 6-7 feet ahead of the main plaza. Besides, a collection agent each with a hand-held billing machine was deployed in these 10 lanes.
But this experiment failed to reduce the mess. While some zipped past the extra toll booths, others stopped at the plaza as they had no idea as to how to go about it.
Surprisingly, traffic flow was smoother on Thursday when the firm experimented with six additional toll terminals at distance of 100 metres from the plaza.
While the DGSCL claimed it is still experimenting with various models, the real test of the plan would be on Monday when the traffic volume touches its peak load of 2-lakh vehicles.
“Apart from kiosks and remote terminals, we have deployed around 100 additional staff for the exercise,” said a DGSCL spokesperson. The DGSCL will file its action-taken report on August 16 in the Punjab and Haryana high court.
On the other hand, commuters’ response to the new arrangement was mixed.
“Why do they carry out experiments and create chaos on a holiday,” said Varun Sharma, a daily commuter.
However, a few called for patience. “We should be patient. If such experiments will help find a solution, we must cooperate with the toll operator,” said Rohan Kumar, another commuter.