Published On : Thu, Oct 8th, 2020

HC puts top cops on notice over traffic chaos in Nagpur

Cops are busy in talking on mobile phones and turning blind towards traffic mess

Nagpur: The Nagpur Bench of Bombay High Court on Wednesday rapped the Traffic Police for the mess in city. Traffic cops are found busy in talking on mobile phones instead of streamlining the traffic chaos which is worsening day by day.

The callous and casual attitude of police in handling city’s ever-growing and chaotic traffic scenario was lambasted by a division bench consisting of Justice Ravi Deshpande and Justice Pushpa Ganediwala. The judges took the police top brass to task and granted them two weeks to show the results. “Else, we will be constrained to direct the State Government to replace officers who are unable to control the lower rungs and manage city’s traffic,” High Court warned, virtually issuing an ultimatum to top brass. The High Court has put the Commissioner of Police and other senior officers on notice tersely asking him to improve the situation and instill a sense of discipline and alertness in constabulary.

The High Court rejected the justification about lack of manpower and infrastructure, while noting that this showed lack of seriousness and sensitivity to the problem which was being faced by the public at large. Echoing the public sentiment, the High Court noted with great anguish, “Since last about one year, it is observed that there is total failure to control and regulate the traffic on several important roads even during the office hours. The traffic police are either not seen or appeared to be continuously engaged in watching or talking on the mobile phones or talking with each other, ignoring even the jumping of signals and other traffic rules. In this contextr, the High Court cited an example of a lady constable posted right outside High Court. Due to their inaction and dereliction, a serious problem of traffic congestion is being created, it added.

A similar exercise was undertaken two years ago, pointed out Amicus Curiae Shreerang Bhandarkar while lamenting that earlier directions were being followed only in breach and the traffic was not regulated and constables were found sitting by the side of the road engaged in watching content in cellphones. While hearing a suo-motu PIL about blatant violation of traffic rules and provisions of Motor Vehicles Act by teenagers who drive bikes and powerful scooterettes without valid driving licence, High Court once again pointed out blatant violation of traffic rules, signal jumping,and shocking response from authorities to control the menace. The situation is alarming, the High Court noted with concern while directing Commissioner of Police, who himself had handled city’s traffic and even Mumbai’s traffic for quite a long time, to set his house in order.

The High Court warned that it would be constrained to take a serious view, if the situation did not improve.