Those who park their vehicles under underpasses and flyovers and seek shelter from the rain will now be penalised by the Bengaluru Traffic Police (BTP) on the charge of obstruction of traffic for safety reasons.
The decision has been taken after a total of four cases were registered in the city in the last two months, where two-wheeler riders and pedestrians suffered serious injuries while standing under underpasses.
The fine amount will be ₹500 for first-time offenders. If the violation is repeated, a case will be booked under IPC Section 283 (danger or obstruction in public way or line of navigation).
“Now if we will get fined for standing under underpasses and flyovers, then let them fine the civic bodies also as it is their fault that roads get waterlogged and we are forced to find shelter until the water recedes. ”Suhas Krishna A techie from Rajarajeshwari Nagar
“In the rainy season, motorists from behind cannot see those parked on the roads (under flyovers and underpasses) in this manner, due to dull lighting and rainfall. As a result, even if the drivers brake as soon as they see the parked vehicles, their vehicle does not stop immediately due to the rain, and hence, accidents occur,” said B.R. Ravikanthe Gowda, Joint Commissioner (Traffic), Bengaluru, in a press release on Thursday.
The four cases were registered in the jurisdictions of the High Grounds, the Kumaraswamy Layout, the K.R. Puram, and the Jeevan Bima Nagar traffic police stations.
“Despite deploying officers at these places to inform commuters not to park their vehicles, they still do so and are putting themselves and others in danger. This is why, they will be penalised henceforth,” Mr. Gowda further said.
However, this move has not gone down well, as it is quite common in the city for two-wheeler riders to wait out the rain under these structures.
“The rains in Bengaluru are so sudden sometimes and we immediately go to the nearest shelter point to avoid getting drenched. It is not possible to find a bus shelter or a shop where we can stand. Now if we will get fined for standing under underpasses and flyovers, then let them fine the civic bodies also as it is their fault that roads get waterlogged and we are forced to find shelter until the water recedes,” said Suhas Krishna, a techie from Rajarajeshwari Nagar.
“I drive my two-wheeler for 15 kilometres every day for work. If it rains, I stop my vehicle and stand under flyovers with my umbrella. As it is advised to not take shelter under trees or in any other open spaces during thunderstorms, where else are we supposed to go?,” asked Manasa D., a private firm employee from Kaggadasapura.
The BTP officials said that it is not their intention to trouble people when it is raining. “This problem of parking vehicles under underpasses for a long duration is existent even when it is not raining. It is not something we have brought out now to catch vehicles during the rainy season. It is a safety measure.
Jayamahal Road, Khoday junction, and the flyover near the BDA office are the places where we frequently see this problem of obstruction due to parked vehicles. We will first make an announcement to move the vehicles and only if they do not move, will they be levied fines,” explained Kuldeep Kumar Jain, DCP (Traffic), West Division.