Traffic crawls at Delhi-Ghaziabad border as cops screen vehicles for passes
Thousands of commuters were caught in a long traffic jam at the Delhi-Ghaziabad border due to strict checking. The jam, say commuters, began at around 9am and led to long queues which then spread to the internal roads in Ghaziabad.
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday said that borders of Delhi will be sealed for one week. Ghaziabad has put in similar restrictions since April 22, citing a rising number of cases in the district when city residents travel to Delhi.
“I came to drop off my wife who goes to Delhi by car pool. But we got stuck as there is heavy jam from the UP-Gate up to Dabur-crossing on the Link Road and also up to Gaur Green Avenue in Indirapuram on the Delhi-Meerut expressway. The cops are checking every vehicle at the border, which has led to this. Every vehicle is getting checked for passes,” said Jeevan Singh, a resident of Vasundhara.
The Ghaziabad police officials said the checking of vehicles by the Delhi police led to traffic jams on the UP side.
“The Delhi police are checking vehicles at the border so there is very slow movement of vehicles and have led to long queues in Ghaziabad jurisdiction. On our side, we are checking vehicles which are entering Ghaziabad from Delhi,” said Anshu Jain, circle officer (Indirapuram).
The officials have even restricted passage of vehicles before 9am and have advised commuters to return from Delhi after 6pm. Fresh instructions were issued on May 25 with certain categories of commuters exempted upon production of their identification cards and valid authorisation letters from their offices.
Some of the commuters who left Ghaziabad for Delhi early morning said that there were no checks around 7.30am.
“I crossed the UP-Gate border around 7.30m but there were no checks either by the Ghaziabad police or the Delhi police. There was less traffic and I reached my office within 45 minutes. The National Highways Authority of India is also performing repair work on the Delhi-Meerut Expressway and this has also added to traffic jams near the UP-Gate,” said Kuldeep Saxena, Indirapuram resident.
The officials of the NHAI said that the traffic jams were not due to DME works but due to barricading put up at the border area of NH-9.
“Generally the barricading or blocking the highway is not allowed but cops do it to maintain law and order. Earlier we had written to the Delhi authorities about this in order to remove barricading near Akshardham. Otherwise, the purpose of highway and expressway gets defeated,” said Mudit Garg, deputy general manager of NHAI.
According to NHAI officials, the traffic on the Delhi-Meerut Expressway, which is under construction from the UP-Gate to Dasna in Ghaziabad, the passenger car units (PCUs) have reduced to one-fourth during the lockdown period.
“According to our estimates, there is about 80,000 PCU traffic at the UP-Gate which is just one fourth during the present times. The ratio is the same at our toll at Chijarsi (at Pilkhuwa town in Hapur). Our road has full capacity to cater to traffic and our works have not hampered movement of vehicles. It is because of barricading and checks taken up by police,” Garg added.
The phase 1 of the Delhi-Meerut Expressway, about 10km, stretches from Akshardham to the UP-Gate and is operational. The stretch caters to about 1.2 lakh PCUs per day.
The under construction phase 2 of the project is in Ghaziabad and spreads to about 19.8km from the UP-Gate to Dasna. This stretch caters to about 80,000 PCUs per day.
The officials said that different works under phase 2 are taking place at Hindon canal, near Khoda, near CISF camp and Vijay Nagar areas in the Ghaziabad district.
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