Sunday, April 21, 2024

City roads stuck in a traffic quagmire


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SHILLONG, April 2: Amidst the Meghalaya government’s assurances of decongesting and alleviating traffic woes in Shillong, the reality paints a starkly different picture. Each morning and afternoon, the city finds itself ensnared in a chaotic web of traffic, defying all attempts at control.
A stroll through the bustling Laitumkhrah area during school hours unveils a scene of chaos, with traffic personnel struggling in vain. On Tuesday, tensions escalated along the Dhankheti-Don Bosco-Laitumkhrah corridor as gridlock gripped the streets, ensnaring not just vehicles but a multitude of two-wheelers.
Navigating through the throng, it became apparent that the thoroughfare resembled more of a parking lot, with small cars and buses lining the roadside, vying for space to ferry schoolchildren. Even the introduction of STEMS buses, a government initiative, failed to stem the tide, as parents persisted in utilising their private vehicles for school runs.
In the midst of this melee, even ambulances found themselves caught in the quagmire. The Don Bosco junction, once a thoroughfare, now resembles a vehicular labyrinth, impeding the flow of traffic and exacerbating the daily grind for commuters.
Regrettably, this narrative repeats itself with alarming regularity, with the afternoon worsening the already dire situation. The response from Shillong Traffic Police appears lackadaisical, downplaying the cascading repercussions of the gridlock, citing the constantly changing nature of parental pickups and drop-offs.
Similar scenes unfold daily at the IGP point, further underscoring the systemic challenges plaguing the city’s traffic management.
As parents line the roads to collect their wards from nearby schools, Shillong’s thoroughfares clog with a relentless tide of vehicles and two-wheelers, aggravating an already precarious situation.


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