The Tamil Nadu Police Traffic Wardens Organisation will soon launch a campaign to enrol Parent Teacher Association (PTA) members as traffic wardens.

Speaking to The Hindu on the sidelines of a Road Safety Patrol (R.S.P.) teachers training programme here on Thursday, R. Anandakumar, deputy chief traffic warden, said the initiative to include parents as traffic wardens began last year, but they are being inducted only now. “We received 30 applications, which were forwarded to the Commissioner of Police. After interviews, currently 17 are undergoing training,” he said. This year, the members plan to conduct a more rigorous campaign asking parents to help them in making areas near schools safer.

This would also add strength to the organisation, which is facing a staff crunch. “We have 145 traffic wardens for the 310 schools who are our members. Managing traffic is a challenge and with less manpower, sometimes one traffic warden is made to take care of four to five schools in an area,” said Azeem Ahmed, deputy chief traffic warden. Traffic police have come forward to help us, he said.

The members also want the Directorate of School Education to give some incentive to students who enrol as R.S.P. cadets. “N.C.C. cadets are given additional marks, but R.S.P. cadets do not get much encouragement from schools or the education department,” said Mr. Ahmed. “We have given representations to the Education Department but nothing had come out.”

Quite a number of CBSE schools have started giving grades or points ever since Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) was introduced. “We give RSP cadets grades in the report card based on how regular they are and the duties they perform,” said R. Ranganathan, teacher and RSP in-charge, Chinmaya Vidyalaya, Taylors Road. “Students should be given certificates, preferably from the State in recognition of their work, only then would they be motivated to join the programme,” he added.

One of the main areas that was highlighted at the teacher training programme was to make areas around the school accident-free zones. Addressing teachers Sanjay Arora, Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic), said traffic police contributes to 25 per cent of the safety on the roads. The rest is contributed by the road engineering, awareness by road users and the support by people. “RSP is an endeavour of bringing a community together. It is with the help of citizens that the police can do wonders on roads” he said.

Those keen on joining the organisation can visit http://tptwo.org/

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