PWD ignores police’s zebra crossing demand
The Public Works Department (PWD) is yet to come up with visible zebra crossings at all the road intersecting points despite repeated reminders by the traffic police.
DCP Traffic Amanjeet Kaur said, “We have asked the PWD department to make visible zebra crossings at all intersections of roads in the city many times. I hope they complete it soon.”
Kaur said that she was aware that there were few visible zebra crossings and traffic signage at the intersections.
“This is the reason the traffic police are compelled to use additional manpower to help pedestrians cross the roads,” she explained, adding that jaywalking was another reason for disruption of the traffic movement due to broken dividers on many roads.
The DCP made a case for the repair all the broken dividers and to create dividers on roads by the PWD.
Another source from the traffic police revealed that according to a survey 90 per cent area does not have zebra crossings in Guwahati. The source said that only some important roads like GS Road have visible zebra crossing markings at intersecting points like ABC, Super market, Dispur etc, which again gets washed away very soon and the PWD does not bother to refurbish them.
Lack of zebra crossings irk city pedestrians
Pedestrians seem to be equally upset with the dearth of visible zebra crossings in the city.
An irked pedestrian at the Paltan Bazar intersection near Bajaj Showroom said, “I was trying to cross the road with my aged mother to go to the Khadims showroom, but I faced a lot of difficulty as there is no zebra crossing. Neither do we have any traffic police personnel to help us.”
He added that he was able to cross only after the road was free of vehicles for a few seconds.
The same opinion is echoed by citizens at different zones of the city. Some pointed out the difficulty faced by physically challenged and elderly persons in crossing the road in the absence of zebra crossings.
One of the worst stretches is AK Azad Road from Paltan Bazar to Lokhara which lacks zebra crossings and dividers. Traders said jaywalking frequently disrupts traffic movement at every junction. Accidents have been reported in the past at places like Sharabhatti and Lal Ganesh when pedestrians tried to cross the road.
Zebra crossings are marked only during VIP visits
The Public Works Department (PWD) becomes active in the city only during the visit of VIPs.
An official claimed that the government sanctions funds for marking zebra crossings on the road and for repairing the traffic signage ahead of the arrival of VIPs in Guwahati.
He underscored the perennial crisis of funds in the department that has hampered work on the zebra crossings and traffic signage. “There are proposals submitted to the government and the World Bank for financial support to upgrade all the city roads with proper markings and traffic signage but sanctions for only a few roads have been received from the state government.”
The official however clarified that work on the zebra crossings and traffic signage is on at GS Road, AT Road and MG Road. He said a plan has already been submitted for the upgradation of roads in the city and the department is waiting for the sanction of funds by the government.