On Wednesday, Delhi Traffic Police challaned thirty four violators for driving on the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor. However, a Delhi Police inspector, deputed as additional Station House Officer (SHO) at the Greater Kailash police station, went scot-free, ostensibly by abusing his power. MiD DAY photographer Subhash Barolia managed to capture the entire drama when the inspector, took the bus lane to escape the traffic snarl. He was stopped by a traffic cop and was then allowed to drive through the corridor.
At around 4.45 pm, when Delhi Traffic Police officials were busy penalising errant vehicle owners, the traffic cop near Masjid Moth saw a Toyota Etios making its way through the BRT corridor. He flagged down the car. But when he identified the police official in uniform sitting in the car, he smiled at him and allowed the vehicle to go through. When the MiD DAY reporter asked the traffic cop why the car was not penalised, he said, "There was an additional SHO of GK police station sitting in the car. So I let him go".
There was heavy traffic at the point on roads adjoining the BRT corridor. However, only buses and emergency vehicles are allowed in the lane. BRT is a term applied to a variety of public transportation systems using buses to provide faster, more efficient service than an ordinary bus line.
When contacted, Joint Commissioner of Police, Traffic, Satyendra Garg said: "If it is established that any police officer was driving on the BRT lane, action will certainly be taken against him." Garg said that no one, even if it's a police officer, can be allowed to violate traffic rules.
This comes on a day when the Delhi Traffic Police began a special drive, in which challans are being issued to those private vehicles that stray into the BRT corridor. Sources told MiD DAY that thirty four challans were issued on Wednesday, worth two thousand rupees each. Twenty three cars, six bikes and a private taxi were penalised. All in all, Rs 68,000 went into the kitty of Delhi traffic police yesterday.
Transport experts have several times criticised the government for messing up the execution of Delhi's first BRT corridor - the 5.8km stretch between Ambedkar Nagar and Moolchand ospital in south Delhi. The experts also believe that no detailed project report (DPR) was prepared while executing the maiden BRT corridor and several changes were made last minute, and even after opening the road for traffic to accommodate changes suggested by experts and engineers.