Motorists in the city have, by now, learnt to steer clear of the stretch of road in front of the Secretariat as far as possible because there is some demonstration or the other that has claimed this arterial route as its own. Of course, vehicles need their right of way, but who pays attention to the woes of the pedestrians.
As if this route does not pose enough complications for pedestrians, the paved pathways bordering the Secretariat north gate are a put off too. From a distance, they appear a welcome sight – neat, even, and safe with railings guarding against cars zipping by. But step onto this footpath, and one wishes one had rather walked on the road.
With politeness almost a dead virtue, be prepared to glare the other person into submission.
Of course, the guidelines stipulated by the Indian Roads Congress put 1.8 metres as the minimum footpath width.
The Pettah rail overbridge is a site of bottlenecks during the peak hours on a daily basis. The wide approach roads from both sides converge on to the relatively narrow bridge, breaking the smooth flow of traffic. The vehicle crossings at both the entry points add to the traffic problems here. Though the number of buses that travels through this route is less compared to that on other main roads in the city, the traffic flow here is no less.