The fourth day of Delhi government’s odd-even rationing scheme started with traffic congestion on Delhi-Gurgaon expressway on Monday morning -- the first working day since phase two of the scheme was rolled out on April 15.
Unlike the first three days, when roads wore a deserted look because of the extended weekend, traffic snarls were witnessed more on the expressway than city roads on Monday as offices, schools and institutions reopened.
Owing to the jam, many odd-numbered cars could get away with the penalty.
Delhi Police had set up check posts on the Delhi-Gurgaon borders at Sirhaul toll plaza and Mehrauli-Gurgaon road to stop vehicles with odd-number plates from entering or leaving Gurgaon. The check posts also led to traffic snarls on the highway.
“We have been busy since 8 am in streamlining the traffic jam. We will start checking odd-numbered vehicles only after the jam is over,” said Devender Kumar, a Delhi traffic cop, who was on duty near Mahipalpur flyover as traffic moved at snail’s pace towards Gurgaon.
Officials said that nearly 2.5 lakh private cars commute between Delhi and Gurgaon on a normal working day.
In the past days, civil defence volunteers were seen ‘gifting’ roses to defaulters and holding banners promoting ‘Pollution-free Delhi’.
At the Delhi-Gurgaon border on MG Road, the first challan was issued at 8.20 am. Till 10 am, seven challans were issued here. Similarly, more than 10 drivers violating odd-even scheme were penalised near Sirhaul till 11 am.
A number of parents, while returning after ferrying their children, were stopped by police only to be allowed to go later.
“I have just dropped my son to school and will again come to pick him at 12 pm. It is not possible for my 4-year-old to go in bus. The police has let go after I showed my child’s school identity card,” said Sarthak Singh, one of the parents.
In the city, last-mile connectivity remained an issue in the absence of facilities to cater to the sudden rise in public transport users. Metro stations, especially the Huda City Metro station, also witnessed heavy rush during morning peak hours.
People were seen adhering to the rationing scheme as most of the cars plying on the highway were even-numbered in tandem with the date -- April 18.
“People seem more aware in the second phase. A number of challans were issued on the first working day, in the first phase, as compared to today,” said Dayanand Pawal, transport department official on duty at MG road check post.