Despite the recent spate of drink-driving accidents in the city, Mumbaiites feel their neighbourhoods have become relatively safer and see fewer accidents because of the traffic police’s efforts to discourage drink driving.
Mihir Chitre, a copywriter with an advertising agency, said the stretch close to his home in Pandurang wadi, Goregaon (east) is safer today.
“The road leading to the east-west flyover close to my home used to witness many accidents because drunk drivers would lose control of their vehicles at the sharp turn,” the 24-year-old said.
“I had a narrow escape once. The driver stopped before he knocked me down, but he was so drunk that he could not speak coherently. But after nakabandis along this stretch, especially on weekends, the road has become much safer.”
Poonam Dhanuka, a 23-year-old homemaker who lives in JB Nagar, Andheri (east), said the junction where Andheri-Kurla Road meets the Western Express Highway sees fewer accidents as traffic constables are regularly deployed there.
“Now, you have at least three traffic personnel at all hours. People who are sober find it tough to navigate this spot, let alone drunk drivers. Nakabandis held to control drink driving have multiple benefits,” said Dhanuka.
Rahul Rajendran, a 24-year-old chartered accountant, said the island city has become safer thanks to the nakabandis.
“I remember going to Girgaum Chowpatty for a late-night drive on one of my birthdays five years ago. We were a group of friends sitting outside an ice-cream centre when we saw a bike zoom past at incredible speed. Even as we looked, the biker rammed into a vehicle coming from the left. That day we cursed the cops for the lack of patrols. But with the current nakabandis and other measures being taken by the traffic police, I think we have eaten our words,” said Rajendran, a resident of Goregaon.