With an aim to rehaul and professionalise traffic management in the city, the State government has brought back M.A. Saleem, a 1993-batch IPS officer with a track record of innovative traffic management and a PhD degree to back it, to helm traffic in the city.
Following recent complaints by several industrialists and investors of the crippling traffic in the city even during Invest Karnataka 2022, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, who also holds charge of Bengaluru Development, had recently said that easing traffic congestion in the city was his government’s top priority.
Sources said the Chief Minister was keen on bringing back Dr. Saleem to head traffic management in the city.
To accommodate Dr. Saleem, the post of the Bengaluru City Traffic Police Chief has been upgraded to Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) rank, to which even the City Police Commissioner belongs to.
In a newly created post, M.N. Anucheth has been posted as Joint Commissioner, Bengaluru City Traffic Police, to assist Dr. Saleem.
Dr. Saleem is known to be one of the rare officers passionate about traffic management and has had one of the longest stints managing traffic in Bengaluru in various capacities.
His passion for traffic management was such that he went on to get a PhD on ‘Traffic management in metropolitan cities: A framework to provide sustainable strategies to overcome traffic congestion and ensure greater safety on road’, from Bangalore University in 2010.
During his stint managing city traffic, he rehauled and streamlined traffic management in the city, which started adapting technology with the B-TRAC project under M.N. Reddi.
Dr. Saleem was once called ‘one way Saleem’, as he introduced one ways on 122 key roads and several junction improvement programmes, streamlining traffic flow without congestion after a scientific study across the city.
He is credited with several new initiatives when he was at the helm of traffic management in the city: safe routes to schools initiative, local area traffic management committees, and public eye for better participation of public, establishing automation enforcement centre, and auto drivers display cards in the city.