SRINAGAR: The road dividers, both plastic as well as iron, installed in different parts of the city have become a major source of congestion on Srinagar’s roads.
The traffic police had installed these dividers in different areas of Old City and Civil Lines to streamline chaotic vehicular movement, but most of the dividers were either damaged by erring road users or only ended up adding to the traffic congestion. Interestingly, many plastic dividers have also disappeared in the evenings from the city’s busy roads.
While the road dividers were installed to reduce traffic congestion, the solution turned out to be a major source of annoyance as, during peak hours, most of the roads still witness traffic jams. “One month before, department installed these plastic dividers in the Goni Khan area so that it doesn’t witness traffic jams, but due to these dividers, people are facing more jams as all the vehicles coming from two directions are meeting at the same point, which creates more traffic congestion,” said a group of shopkeepers.
“These dividers have been procured and installed in the city several times, but traffic scenario didn’t see any change. Lakhs of rupees have already gone down the drain, and the department (traffic police) is still on a purchasing spree, without considering the ineffectiveness of these dividers,” a traffic official who wished not to be named told Kashmir Reader.
As per the official, for good fixation of these dividers, the size and the material of bolts needs to be good. These bolts couldn’t sustain even a minor jerk from vehicles, leading to damage to the dividers.
Due to these dividers in the Hawal area, the vehicles have to take a turn near Islamia College. “While coming from Dargah route we have to take turn in Islamia College and only after that can we take turn to Eidgah route, while before dividers, we would take turn near Hawal Chowk. We are facing problems, because of these dividers most of the bus divers did not take the Eidgah route, which results in many passengers suffering,” said a group of drivers.
Meanwhile, officis at the Traffic Department told Kashmir Reader that they have installed these dividers so that traffic will ply smoothly. “These dividers were installed to create a separate lane for minibuses to streamline other vehicular movements and follow the traffic rules,” they said.