HT spoke to traffic police chief Satyendra Garg on a range of issues faced by pedestrians in Delhi. Excerpts:
Traffic police launch so many drives but pedestrians are still dying on roads.
The number of accidents involving pedestrians is going up nationally. But in Delhi, the number is reducing and we are happy about it. But I agree that the number should come down further. We are making efforts to improve the situation.
How can the streets be made safer for pedestrians?
We should create more infrastructure for them such as footpaths and ensure that pavements are not encroached upon. There is a need to create more facilities to cross the road and those facilities should be constructed at right places and should be in a usable condition. Motorists should also be careful. Moreover, pedestrians should use the facilities created for them. We need to change the mindset. Certain institutional changes — such as how driving licences are issued and the way commercial drivers are trained and introducing heavy penalty for traffic violations — also necessary.
How receptive are road building agencies to the ideas given by traffic police?
Road owning agencies do take our suggestions. UTTIPEC also brings all stakeholders on board where issues are discussed and decisions taken. All agencies concerned are jointly responsible for the decisions taken.