Driving in Guwahati; A motorist’ nightmare

Tuesday, 19 November 2019

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Editorials

Driving in Guwahati; A motorist’ nightmare

Sidharth Bedi Varma | June 22, 2019 12:31 hrs


For a city that still hasn’t understood the correct use of the ‘hazard light’, the fact that people have started giving way to an ambulance on the road, seems to tell us that all is not lost. This driving etiquette took people quite some time to come to terms with.


The city is currently in need of serious driving lessons. We are well aware that the DTO has in the past doled out licenses and/or has had “agents” within the premises arrange them as required (and yes, if you know how to, you can find them still!).


The DTO has been accused of having dalaals at the office premises who arrange licenses for as low as Rs. 300, as a “convenience fee,” which of course is my fancy way of avoiding the word “bribe.”


The agents were the evil that would help you acquire a license quickly; by skipping the queues and getting to the test. However, as time has passed and the agents became “acceptable”, skipping queues has now led to skipping tests, which of course is no good. The city is now flooded with illiterate drivers who do not understand a service lane from a highway or the correct use of a hazard light.


 Of course, the city is struggling with an acute drinking water problem, joblessness, skyrocketing real-estate prices, vegetable syndication and others, bad drivers only making it worse.


There is a reason why the Uber and Olas of the city are failing. It is because that small rectangle card (issued to a driver) is not just a license to drive; rather it proves that you are eligible for making correct decisions on the road. But when the bearer has not been tested correctly, the city is bound to be a nightmare to drive in.


Forget Bombay and Delhi’s stressful driving. Once you conquer the streets of Guwahati, everything else is just pfft…!

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