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Updated: March 16, 2013 10:44 IST

Are they cut out for the job?

Special Correspondent
Comment (5)   ·   print   ·   T  T  
A cut-out placed against a barricade near the Raj Bhavan junction. Photo: K. Murali Kumar
The Hindu A cut-out placed against a barricade near the Raj Bhavan junction. Photo: K. Murali Kumar

Police come up with an unusual ploy to deter traffic violators

You’re all set to tear through the red light but stop suddenly on spotting a traffic policeman, arms folded, staring down at you.

Only then do you realise that the lawman is not human, but a life-size cut-out.

This is the traffic police’s novel way of stopping violators on their tracks at junctions across the city.

Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic) M.A. Saleem told The Hindu the aim is to reduce not only traffic violations but also the resultant accidents.

As a police officer put it, Bangalore may be the country’s IT capital but it has the dubious distinction of being on the world map for the most indisciplined and uncouth road users. He wearily said Bangaloreans have a penchant for breaking traffic rules whenever they get a chance, and the minimum Rs. 100 fine is too piffling to deter them.

Even so, Cubbon Park Traffic Inspector N.K. Rangaswamy said: “It’s a general tendency for people not to violate rules in police presence. As we have shortage of men to deploy at every junction, we decided to use the scarecrow technique to reduce violations.”

But not all traffic police personnel are impressed. As an officer sniffed: “Many motorists don’t give a damn for the real police. Then how can they be scared of cut-outs?”

Another said: “All this won’t work unless the motorists have a minimum sense discipline.” He added only slapping fines and sending them to court to pay it would cut violations.

However, even traffic policemen are not safe in this big bad city: two of the cut-outs have already been stolen in the dark of the night.

So now the traffic police have another chore: gather them at night, deposit them safe at the police station and plonk them back at junctions in the morning.

More In: Bangalore

Another band-aid attempt rather than genuinely solving the problem.

Please credit our people with abundant common sense and not birdbrains who will fall for a scarecrow. That placard will last 20 minutes before somebody throws a stone at it to show that its unreal. They may then throw stones at the real policemen as well to check if he is real. A beggar may take the placard to light a bonfire to keep him warm in winter !

from:  Prasan
Posted on: Mar 18, 2013 at 04:45 IST

A nice idea, but it would not have a lasting effect. The fines need to be escalated exponentially so that the drivers and motorists take such things seriously. Sending the offenders to pay at the court would definitely improve their attitude.

from:  Nilkanth
Posted on: Mar 18, 2013 at 04:13 IST

This is fantastic idea besides its impact of daring traffic
violators, it will save life of innocent policemen who are
sometimes overrun by the speeding vehicles.

from:  yuvraj
Posted on: Mar 16, 2013 at 14:00 IST

Brilliant! Really!

from:  Arvind
Posted on: Mar 16, 2013 at 13:48 IST

This ploy of using cutouts was used in Mumbai,where a cutout of a
traffic policeman with a speed gun was placed on a stretch of road known
for people driving recklessly and at high speeds. In just a couple of
days, people saw through the trick and things were back to as it is.
Dont think it is going to work in Bangalore either.

from:  AP Sarathy
Posted on: Mar 16, 2013 at 11:54 IST
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