by Aqib Nazir
SRINAGAR: The Rs 33 lakh traffic signal system project in Baramulla district is yet to be made operational even though it was started in August 2018.
The system was installed to address issues related to traffic management in the town, despite lakhs of taxpayers money spent on the project.
The project is languishing even though the Municipal Council Baramulla (MCB), the elected body for the development of the town, generates lakhs of rupees from the public.
The defunct traffic lights are not only creating traffic mess in the area but has also put the concerned authorities under scanner for withdrawing the bills, despite work on the project being still unfinished.
The Executive Officer MCB Imtiyaz-ul-Huq said they have received a certificate from the Traffic Police department claiming that the traffic lights are functional.
“They are functional. It is not our headache to go and check them.”
SO Traffic Baramulla town Nazir Ahmad said, “We are going to install more traffic signal lights in town. After that then we will make all of them operational.”
It is pertinent to mention here that SO traffic has already submitted a certificate with the MCB stating the contradictory to his own statement now.
The locals allege that the department has installed the non-operational traffic lights only to get the funds released for the project rather than to ease the lives of the public.
“We are a backward place because of these bureaucrats, they are just releasing the money for their own benefits, “said a resident of Baramulla town.
An official in the district administration said the traffic signals were installed without properly carrying out any survey.
“No groundwork was done before installing this system. The authorities should have first expanded the road width and then installed these lights,” the official said.
The traffic signal light system in Baramulla town has become the content for sarcasm.
Mohsin Arif, a student said, “When I think my life is worthless, I see this defunct light system .”
Former Deputy Commissioner Dr Nasir Ahmad Naqash had directed the Assistant Regional Traffic Officer (ARTO) Barammula to constitute special teams in order to ensure hassle-free traffic in the town along with curbing the menace of rash driving by drivers to avoid loss of human life.
ARTO Baramulla then had constituted a special team under SO Traffic Police Baramulla to make the traffic lights operational.
“Why have they installed these lights when they have failed to make them functional. The traffic signals installed in Baramulla town have not been functioning since installation. As a result, there is a traffic chaos every day,” said a shop owner.
The Deputy Commissioner Baramulla Mohammad Aijaz said he has joined recently.
“I have just joined here; I will look into the matter as soon as possible.”