Madurai

Rains do not dampen the Deepavali shopping spirit in Madurai

Every inch occupied: South Masi Street bursting at the seams as Deepaval nears.  

Thousands of shoppers are descending on Masi Streets every day for buying dresses, electronic goods and other materials ahead of Deepavali, choking the vehicular traffic, especially on South Masi Street and West Masi Street.

Though the late evening sharp showers brought inconvenience to the shoppers, crowding continued on Sunday. Since all the Masi Streets are already following one-way traffic, vehicles could move only at a snail’s pace. “We restrict entry of cars and autorickshaws into South Masi and West Masi streets whenever the traffic movement gets choked. But two-wheelers are permitted,” a senior Traffic Police Officer said.

Over 20 traffic wardens assist the City Traffic Police in regulating the vehicles. Commissioner of Police Prem Anand Sinha said that additional police personnel had been posted and watch towers erected at vantage points for crime prevention.

100 more cameras

“Over 100 additional cameras for closed circuit television camera networks have been put to keep a watch on movement of crowd and anti-social elements,” he added.

The police are planning to make the stretch of Netaji Road between Jhansi Rani Park and Baladhandayuthapani Swamy Temple one-way to manage the crowd till Deepavali. “Since Deepavali shoppers from neighbouring districts such as Theni, Dindigul, Sivaganga, Ramanathapuram and Virudhunagar come in large numbers in cars, we face difficulty in regulating traffic on this stretch of Netaji Road,” he said.

Most of the vehicles leave the Masi streets after dropping the shoppers and parking is allowed, as of now, on East Veli Street.

“As the crowd is increasing, we will provide parking lots at St. Mary's Higher Secondary School on East Veli Street and and Sethupathi Higher Secondary School on North Veli Street,” he added.

People can also make use of the paid parking facility on Madurai railway junction premises. Some of the traders suggested that the vacant space at Periyar bus stand, under renovation, can be used for parking vehicles for the festival season.

Meanwhile, the pothole-ridden East Marret Street and South Marret Street are posing danger to the road users, especially two-wheeler riders. “People fail to notice the potholes and fall down as a thick sheet of rainwater cover the roads,” a police officer said.


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Printable version | Dec 9, 2021 1:22:57 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Madurai/rains-do-not-dampen-the-deepavali-shopping-spirit-in-madurai/article37152943.ece

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