How Aizawl Became India's First City With A No Honking Policy

From this month, all vehicles including those government own in Aizawl will have to remain off road thrice a month depending on the last digit on their number plate. If it ends with one, the vehicle will be off road on 1st, 11th and 21st of the month.

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How Aizawl Became India's First City With A No Honking Policy

For a city with over 3.5 lakh people, there are about 1.25 lakh registered vehicles in Aizawl.

Aizawl, Mizoram:  Imagine this: It's Monday morning office rush hours - you are sulking in snail-paced traffic, yet no one around honks, no one tries to overtake or break the queues - well that is exactly what happens round the year in Mizoram's capital Aizawl.

Aizawl's smart traffic management is a people's initiative. Everyone here refrains from honking and breaking the long queue of vehicles on hilly serpentine roads.

For a city with over 3.5 lakh people, there are about 1.25 lakh registered vehicles in Aizawl. Sometimes reaching one end of the city from the other - a merely 15 kilometres - might take one two hours.

"People here are polite and disciplined. If there is a traffic jam we realize there is some problem, so high honking won't be a solution," a local, Robert Pachau, told NDTV. 

But maintaining traffic discipline is a social norm for Mizoram. The government now is bringing in new rules and legislation as well. 

"We don't allow noisy roaring bikers, we don't allow honking and to overtake since roads are narrow and pedestrians are threatened. We experimented odd-even formula and it was successful," explained Mizoram Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla to NDTV. 

With over 50 per cent urbanization rate, Aizawl has a growing population, more vehicles and no space to expand roads thus there are some stringent rules. 

No one can get a vehicle registered unless he shows documents on owning a garage for it.

From this month, all vehicles including those government own in Aizawl will have to remain off road thrice a month depending on the last digit on their number plate. If it ends with one, the vehicle will be off road on 1st, 11th and 21st of the month.

The state government has promoted two wheeler taxi, and it's doing well. 

City taxis are the backbone of public transport in Aizawl and a young city traffic police team always thinks of innovative ways to manage them. 

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"We divide taxis in three groups, one group is not allowed each day. We have been doing it for past six months and now we also have a No Plying Day system for each registered vehicle at least thrice a month," said H Laltanpuia, Officer In-Charge, Aizawl city traffic police. 

The way people drive in Aizawl, is something for rest of the country can follow. 

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