The sight of Gurgaon’s chief judicial magistrate (CJM) donning the traffic police’s hat at Rajiv Chowk on Thursday morning was unusual for commuters.
Abhishek Phutela, who is also the secretary, district level service authority (DLSA), took the lead in regulating chaos at the busy crossing after he was forced to walk one-and-a-half kilometres because of snarls.
Around 10am, Phutela was heading towards Rajiv Chowk to attend DLSA’s ongoing road safety awareness campaign when he was caught up in traffic. The 36-year-old tried diverting his car towards Sector 15, where he got stuck in a snarl. A deviation to the Civil Lines route, and Phutela was caught up again, forcing him to complete the remaining 1.5 kilometres on foot.
Instead of taking part in the campaign, Phutela asked volunteers to help traffic officials in clearing the intersection.
“I saw that traffic officials were trying their best to clear the road. Then, I asked my volunteers to help the officials in managing traffic instead of the campaign that we had taken up,” Phutela said.
Phutela and 25 volunteers -- all law students interning with the DLSA, helped the officials till the road was cleared after two hours.
“The jam was because of people not following traffic rules. So we tried to convince people to take designated routes. By 12, the jam was cleared,” Phutela said.
Before joining as CJM in Gurgaon, Phutela was posted in Ambala as Railway magistrate, Haryana. He joined the judiciary eight yeas ago.
The DLSA’s special road safety awareness march — One Life -- was launched on Tuesday during the 45th car-free day in Gurgaon. The project includes awareness about road signs and safety, and offences and punishments under the Motor Vehicles Act.