Hyderabadis prefer to use foot overbridges as shelter from rain
People find it easier to walk across the road
Homeless people spend the night in the FOBs
HYDERABAD: What was made for the safety of public has now been reduced to mere advertising spaces and sleeping quarters for the poor. This is the condition of foot overbridges (FOB) across the city which have only a handful of takers.
It was only a few years back where the need for FOBs were called for by the government authorities after a school student died in an accident at Secunderabad.
But today, with so many FOBs built at various busy areas in the city, the metal structure seldom sees pedestrians using them. Moreover, they have become a haven for street vendors, homeless people and in some places, a hangout for couples.
For instance, the FOB at Begumpet was setup keeping the school and colleges in mind.
Let alone using it for getting to the other side without having to deal with speeding traffic, the FOB is being used as shelter from rain.
“I use it only when it is raining otherwise I find it easier to cross the road and go to my bus stop near the school,” says R. Lakshmi, a B.Com student of Begumpet Women’s College.
Others feel that the footover bridge would have been effective if it were built between Maharishi Vidya Niketan High School and Begumpet Women’s College. “For people commuting towards Secunderabad, the foot over bridge is way too far from the bus stop,” laments E. Sujatha, a call centre employee.
The one at Rasoolpura also joins the bandwagon as people are seen crossing the road braving traffic, jumping over the median to get to the other side, instead of using the bridge. “It’s a waste of time to climb so many steps when one is in a hurry to catch the bus on the other side,” Says P. Srinath, an employee of ECIL.
One of the busiest places in the city, Ameerpet is one step ahead. The FOB is seamlessly empty, given to the fact that the bad road condition automatically slows down traffic, people find it easier to walk across the road rather than climbing the bridge.
The FOB near St. Ann’s is used only during school hours. “Probably 30-odd people use the FOB during the day. Because there is a school here, the bridge is somewhat full when it used by the students during school timings,” says Ramu, a coconut-seller near the school. One can also see homeless people spending the night in the FOBs. “I pay Rs. 20 per week to the traffic police and I’m allowed to sleep at the bridge from 9.30 p.m. to 6.30 a.m.,” says a beggar.