Scrap cycle tracks project if you can’t ensure enforcement: HC to Chandigarh
Earlier, justice Singh noted that there are not adequate policemen on the ground to ensure enforcement nor there are enough cameras on intersections to check violators.punjab Updated: Oct 09, 2018 10:36 IST
The Punjab and Haryana high court on Monday categorically told the Chandigarh administration to scrap the dedicated cycle tracks project in UT if it can’t ensure proper implementation.
“Remove tracks. It is endangering their (cyclists) lives. Make it free to all. Let’s give everybody’s life in their own hands,” the high court (HC) bench of justice Amol Rattan Singh said during resumed hearing of a suo motu petition on traffic-related issues.
The Chandigarh administration has been constructing cycle tracks along the roads across the city. On Saturday, traffic police started a drive to initiate criminal cases of dangerous driving against those found driving or riding their vehicles on cycle tracks.
However, the court was perturbed over the shoddy implementation of the project and lack of enforcement.
Meanwhile, the HC also sought to know what Chandigarh has planned to deal with increasing traffic in future. The court sought the Master Plan 2031 proposals on traffic in general and parking in particular.
“You had planned that monorail system. What happened to that... You need such initiatives so that people don’t buy vehicles,” the court said, while responding to submissions from a counsel, who had highlighted that vehicle density of the city was very high.
‘Not enough cops on ground’
Earlier, justice Singh noted that there are not adequate policemen on the ground to ensure enforcement nor there are enough cameras on intersections to check violators.
“You say cameras will be installed under smart city project. We don’t know when… There are not enough policemen on ground.. then finish it off (the project),” justice Singh said to submissions from UT senior superintendent of police (traffic) Shashank Anand, who had sought more time for strengthening enforcement.
To the Chandigarh administration’s submission that it had sent a proposal to the Union ministry of home affairs (MHA) for recruitment of 1,355 policemen, out of which 455 will be for traffic, court asked the UT director general of police and home secretary to follow it up with the ministry.
The court also wondered as to why Chandigarh was not deploying Home Guards jawans and pulling out reserve police from battalions for increased vigil.
Chandigarh administration told court that it was taking steps to increase enforcement and also smoothening the tracks, but added it required more time. It also blamed commuters from Mohali and Panchkula for creating traffic problems in the city, even as it has launched massive drives on educating citizens.
The court also questioned as to why pedestrian paths are being used for parking and asked the SSP to expedite efforts to tow away vehicles.
96 cases in 3 days
The Chandigarh traffic police on Saturday started a drive to initiate criminal proceedings of dangerous driving against those found driving or riding their vehicles on cycle tracks.
Within three days, 96 cases have been registered under Section 184 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988.
Those booked are being arrested on spot and then released on surety bonds. Later, they will get summons from court and face summary trial.
The first offence is punishable with imprisonment for a term that may extend to six months or fine up to ₹1,000 or both.
For the second or subsequent offence, if committed within three years of similar offence, the jail term can extend to two years or fine up to Rs 2,000 or both.
First Published: Oct 09, 2018 10:36 IST