Commuters again bore the brunt of VIP movement on Tuesday, this time on the Delhi-Noida-Direct (DND) Flyway where workers of Samajwadi Party (SP) gathered at the toll plaza to welcome a newly appointed state minister.
Traffic on the access controlled expressway was stalled for nearly three hours — from 11am to 2pm.
Traffic police personnel said they had a tough time managing the crowd and restoring normal traffic movement.
Vehicles moved at a snail’s pace on the flyway and the police remained mute spectators as commuters battled in vain to navigate the bumper-to-bumper traffic.
Unmindful of the commuters’ agony, the minister’s supporters, joined by a large number of local residents, took to singing, dancing and sloganeering on the main carriageway. The police said SP workers had arrived in large numbers to welcome their newly inducted state minister (independent charge) Madan Chauhan, after a cabinet reshuffle by chief minister Akhilesh Yadav.
The party’s district president Pratap Singh Chauhan said, “We were there to welcome the new minister who was visiting this city for the first time after being inducted into the UP government. Soon, people from the villages also gathered and joined us in the celebrations. We apologise for the disturbance caused due to the event.”
The DND toll operator also proved helpless in managing the crowd. “We tried to divert traffic coming from Maharani Bagh towards Noida to Mayur Vihar, but that route also got choked. Traffic was jammed for nearly three hours between 11am and 2pm, when the minister left for Noida with his supporters,” spokesperson for the Noida Toll Bridge Company Limited (NTBCL) said.
“Why should we suffer due to the minister and his supporters who took law into their hands, rendering the police and toll operator ineffective? The act is in total violation of the traffic norms and the police should have acted,” said Mahesh Singh, a commuter.
“It took us hours to remove people from the main carriageway to ensure continuous flow of traffic. We kept one lane free,” said traffic inspector Dharmendra Kumar.
Kumar also said no one has the right to take law in their hands and disturb traffic flow.