One of the main reasons for pedestrian casualties is encroachment of footpaths by not only commercial establishments and hawkers, but also by motorists, according to Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic) M.A. Saleem.

The extension of shops and commercial establishments onto the footpaths and parking of vehicles on the footpaths force pedestrians to walk on the roads, making them vulnerable.

“Like roads are for motorists, footpaths are meant for pedestrians,” Mr. Saleem said.

The traffic police have initiated a drive this month to clear the footpath encroachment by fining shopkeepers as well as automobile owners who encroach upon footpaths. Riding or driving vehicles on footpaths is also an offence.

During the first week of March, the Pedestrian Safety Month, the traffic police booked 7,509 cases for parking on footpaths, 2,350 for riding on footpaths and 4112 for encroachment by hawkers and commercial establishments.

A senior traffic police official pointed out that more than 50 per cent of the roads are in a bad shape and despite assurances, the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike has done precious little to fill potholes too.

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