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Traffic rules end at Rasulgarh

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Traffic management at Rasulgarh Square is a nightmare for motorists and pedestrians.Sandeep Dwivedy of The Telegraph takes a look at peak-hour chaos with buses picking up passengers from the middle of the road, trucks in reckless run, autorickshaws breaking rules at will and vehicles plying on the wrong side of the road between Rasulgarh Square and Acharya Vihar Square. Lack of traffic police personnel at this busy junction only aggravates the congestion

A motorcyclist rides against the flow of traffic on the RTO-Vani Vihar stretch

The bottleneck

Rasulgarh Square is the first hurdle before one heads for Acharya Vihar Square from Palasuni. People coming from Cuttack and areas such as Palasuni, GGP Colony, Mancheswar Industrial Estate and the Cuttack-Puri road and going towards Acharya Vihar, Chandrasekharpur, Patia and Khandagiri use this intersection.

Culprits many

Buses plying towards Cuttack are mainly responsible for the traffic snarl. The buses violate traffic signals, over-speed, overtake from the wrong side and halt anywhere to pick-up passengers at this busy intersection. In 2012, a man was run over by a speeding truck while boarding a bus that had stopped in the middle of the road.

If buses are the main culprits, autorickshaws are no less.

A heavy vehicle and smaller ones jostle for space at Vani Vihar Square

“Autos do not abide by any traffic rules at this junction and add to the congestion. They overtake from the wrong side and put pedestrians lives in danger,” said a local resident.

Trucks are the other menace at the junction.

Patia resident Dipak Mohapatra said a truck had hit his car at the intersection last year. “In the absence of traffic cops, trucks and buses heading towards Cuttack-Puri road and Vani Vihar Square drive recklessly and pose a threat to smaller vehicles,” he said.

“Traffic congestion on the National Highway No. 5 at Rasulgarh has become a daily nuisance. The situation is worse during evening hours with commuters waiting for buses along the road,” said GGP Colony resident Narendra Swain.

Bus stop, what?

Residents say absence of a designated bus stop has made matters worse. There is little hope for the situation to improve with a senior official of the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation saying there is no plan to build a bus stop in the area. He blamed traffic personnel for the chaos.

“The traffic at the square is chaotic and ill-managed. A bus stop must be built to pick up or drop passengers,” said Rasulgarh resident and daily commuter Debendra Sarangi.

The chaotic stretch between RTO and Vani Vihar

Spot the cops

GGP Colony resident Narendra Swain shortage of police personnel is a major reason for the chaos. While cops are posted at the intersection on the stretch from Rasulgarh Square to Cuttack, no one is deployed on the other side. “The problem of vehicles coming from Palasuni, Mancheswar Industrial Estate and Vani Vihar remains unanswered,” he said.

Ironically, traffic policemen also add to the problem as they stop halt vehicles midway to collect fines.

“There are 20 traffic policemen at the junction. But they are more busy collecting fines than managing the chaos,” said local resident Narasingha Dhal.

Talking about the chaos, a traffic police official said: “Volunteers and more traffic personnel will shortly be posted at the square.

Read more at: http://www.telegraphindia.com/1160910/jsp/odisha/story_107330.jsp#.V9PuoVt97IU

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