Break, not fast
Time to break fast, time to be home. But you can not make it, thanks to traffic jam.
CONCERN BY INAM UL REHMAN
Just a few moments and it is Iftar time. And In Kashmir it is the time to be home. But no, not every one these days can make it home. One major reason for that is the traffic jam. Just a look at the scene of jam and it is absolutely easy to make it that there are no signs that people caught in it can reach home and break fast with family. The anxiety tto get out of the jam somehow can be gauged fro the fact that there is, on all such occasions, enough honking, despite everyone knowing that the person driving the next vehicle is equally helpless. Given the volume of traffic and the work schedule people in good numbers are finding themselves stuck in these jams.
Sajad Ahmad, resident of HMT, knows well how painful it is to get stuck in the middle of a traffic jam when the time to break the fast is just minutes away. He finds the traffic jam from Qamarwari to Barthan absolutely pathetic. “Especially at the iftar time when people are in a rush to reach their homes traffic jam plays the spoilsport,” he expresses his unease. He regrets the fact that he is never sure he will break the fast with his family. But why is it so. Congested roads, and mismanagement of traffic during peak hours; this is the common response. People caught in a traffic jam, like Sajad, have another point to make. “Traffic police is mostly inactive, they are not even properly trained.” says Sajad.
Here is another person. He too is the victim of this problem, but he has a different take. Javaid Sofi, a goods supplier from Parry Pora, says that traffic police do try to manage traffic on the roads. But the problem has grown bigger and they can not help that. “because of the construction of flyover, traffic jams have become frequent at Hyderpora bypass.” How can traffic police overcome this problem unless the construction work is complete, he seems to ask.
Sofi has another observation. He believes that if drivers act sensibly and do not over take traffic jams can never be that frequent as they are these days. “It is for this reason that I usually use a two wheeler during this month; just to ensure that I break the fast with my family.” Two wheeler manufactures can steal an idea for a ad film!
Discarding the four wheelers during the month of Ramdhan seems to be catching up. Ashiq Hussain, pharma trader from Hyderpora, also underlines the same. “If you want to be with your family at the time of iftar, then either you have to shut down your business earlier or use a two wheeler.” Hussain feels that driving a car during peak hours is a problem. “You have cover it inch by inch during the traffic jam at Rambagh. But with a two wheeler, you can manoeuvre,” Javaid shares his experience.
Regional Transport Officer, Kashmir, Anees Ahmad has a different thing to say. Traffic jams are found everywhere in the world, but in Kashmir it is blown out of proportion. He blames people for having multiple vehicles . “Last time I monitored traffic at Rambagh Bridge for two hours in the morning. 80% of private vehicles had no other person except the driver himself.” The Officer has a very valid point. It is now becoming a trend to have a vehicle for every member of the family. Where is all that traffic to go!
All these points are very valid, but why forget the most important one. If on the one hand there is problem of too many private vehicles, on the other there is dearth of public transport. People stranded on the bus stops complain that after 7 pm they don’t find public transport. If it is so how can we find a solution to this problem.
Unless we have a very vibrant public transport system, regard for traffic rules, and a general sense of using the space in a vehicle to the fullest, we can't have our roads free from traffic jams. So to reach home in time and to break fast with the family we have to change many things; at an individual level and at the systemic level as well.
Lastupdate on : Tue, 16 Aug 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Tue, 16 Aug 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Wed, 17 Aug 2011 00:00:00 IST
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