Featured Image: Mamata Banerjee speaking at the launch of Save Drive Safe Life campaign at Nazrul Mancha in Kolkata as others on the dais look on.
By A Newsman
Kolkata, 08 July: TO put a lid on reckless biking in Kolkata, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has ordered that motorbikes be barred from plying on flyovers in the city after 10 pm to until morning.
In specific, the Chief Minister has asked the police to bar motorbikes on Parama Flyover that connects Park Circus to EM Bypass, and the AJC Bose Road Flyover that runs along Circus Avenue off Park Circus to Race Course near the Victoria Memorial.
“These days, a section of the youths tend to get into reckless bike racing in the city, especially at night. This has become such a menace and is causing frequent accidents. Hence, motorbikes be barred on flyovers like Ma (Parama) and AJC Bose Road after 10 pm,” Banerjee said at Nazrul Manch in south Kolkata after kicking off Safe Drive Save Life ~ a state-wide campaign to curb road accidents.
The state transport department, along with and civic bodies, will carry on the drive aimed at bringing down accidents due to reckless driving.
Furthermore, in order to ensure that people wear helmet, the Chief Minister has asked the transport department to make procurement of helmet mandatory when people buy new two-wheeler anywhere in Bengal.
“Accidents are a crime and we have to imprint this in people’s mind through a sustained campaigned throughout July-August and during the Durga Puja,” she said.
“There is a small section of people who are used to violating traffic rules and putting the lives of others in jeopardy; they even assault traffic cops every now and then. We wouldn’t tolerate such lawlessness and strict action must be taken against such people.”
To encourage effective enforcement of traffic rules, the Chief Minister also announced that over the next one year, a family member of the concerned traffic policeman would be given state government job if the area under his jurisdiction witnesses least number of accidents. Likewise, for areas with maximum number of accidents, the traffic policeman in-charge will be “blacklisted.”
To keep a tab on commercial vehicles that are registered in other states but operate in Bengal on a regular basis, the Chief Minister has asked the state transport department to examine whether a second registration could be introduced for such vehicles in Bengal.
“This way we will be able to keep a track of the vehicles hailing from other states and get some revenue as well. In Sikkim, they do not allow our vehicles to ply beyond Gangtok; we wouldn’t walk along that path but a second registration can surely be explored for vehicles from other states that operate in Bengal,” she said.