Only 600 of the total 1,442 CCTV cameras have been installed, with the work on the remaining locations still in the installation stage.
The Ludhiana police are yet to initiate challaning of traffic violators, making use of the cameras which are already functional. Also, there is no sign yet of advanced features such as automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) and red light violation detection in the cameras already installed.
Features such as detection of wrong vehicle direction, loitering and crowd formation in a defined area, trip wire detection for pedestrians crossing roads and unattended object detection are also awaited as the required software is yet to be installed.
It was also announced at the time of launch that the cameras with super advanced features would also zoom in onto vehicles taking a wrong turn or those jumping red light. They would then send a beep to the control room where the operators could issue a challan. However, the project is progressing at a slow pace with these features yet to see the light of the day.
Of the 600 cameras said to be fully operational, several have developed technical faults and are being repaired.
The cameras, meant to make the city safe, have not been able to detect any major crime in Ludhiana in the past there months. In an incident of carjacking reported on the Ferozepur road last week, the range of cameras was found to be some distance short of the crime spot.
The project cost in the city is over Rs 80 crore and it is envisaged to be extended to other parts of the state at a cost of Rs 500 crore.
‘DEMONETISATION SLOWED PACE’
Rajiv Garg of Reliance Jio, which is providing the cameras to the police, said the project was stalled for some time in the month of November due to demonetisation. The cameras were to be made fully functional by December 20. “We were unable to make payments to our labour due to cash crunch, which delayed the project,” said Garg. He said the remaining cameras would be installed soon.
Additional deputy commissioner of police (headquarters) Sandeep Garg said the police would commence manual challaning through these cameras next week. “We have been monitoring so many areas in the city round the clock with the help of these cameras. This will prove to be very beneficial once the entire project is complete,” he said.