With Deepavali a month away, the city traffic police are yet to spell out on special traffic arrangements on roads to be swarmed by shoppers soon. Many roads, which were made one-way, do not remain so — vehicles continue to flout the rule and the police remain mute spectators and register cases selectively, according to locals.
Such violations take place, even during peak hours, on Vakkil New Street, a section of East Veli Street, Sambandamoorthy Street, Goods Shed Street, West Marret Street, among others, which were made one-way considering the heavy flow of traffic.
Lack of strict enforcement of the rule and not booking erring motorists results in commotion and frequent quarrels between vehicle users on the middle of the road. Unloading of consignments from heavy vehicles, vans and other goods carriers on the busy East Masi Street and Venkalakadai Street (in the vicinity of the Commissioner of Police office) makes one wonder whether the police had relaxed the rules as the entire activities happen right in the presence of the traffic police, a shopkeeper on Amman Sannidhi said.
On the situation prevailing on West Perumal Maistry Street and West Marret Street less said the better, a lodge manager said. Two-wheelers and autorickshaws are parked all along the stretch near the IMFL retail outlets giving very less carriage space for moving vehicles, he added.
Two days ago, a motorcyclist was riding in a rash manner on North Veli Street even while talking over the mobile phone. A police constable did stop the rider, but after a few minutes let him to go, an executive working in a commercial establishment in the locality said.
The worst stretch is the Goods Shed Street where the parking of two-wheelers occupies most of the road, leaving little space for vehicle movement. During most part of the day even four-wheelers are parked on this street. A pedestrian said that the police may very well close this street for vehicle movement as in the case of the Chithirai streets around Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple.
Similar is the case with West Masi Street and by-lanes such as Kakkathoppu Street.
Commissioner of Police P. Balasubramanian said that he would discuss the matter with his officers and bring in stricter enforcement of traffic rules. He also assured to ensure safe shopping for Deepavali and that the officials were working out the modalities.